VCOM College Catalog and Student Handbook

Participation in the primary care and OMM laboratory on campus requires hands-on osteopathic physical examinations, the ability to make a diagnosis based upon the physical examination, and the ability to apply and practice osteopathic manipulative medicine treatment (also known as OMM or OMT). All VCOM applicants and students are hereby informed of the basic requirement to touch other persons (male and female) and to be touched as a part of the technical standards. In addition, the student must participate in and pass the required primary care and osteopathic manipulative medicine curriculum and all OMM requirements to become a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO). In the OMM laboratory, the student is required to take on both the role of an examining (student) physician and as the patient who is being examined or palpated. Students are therefore required to perform the osteopathic physical examination and certain osteopathic manipulative medicine treatments in the physical diagnosis and osteopathic manipulative medicine laboratory settings where other students will practice performing such examinations and treatments on them. This is known as peer-to-peer learning and is necessary for learning the osteopathic examination and manipulation. In addition, to assure the findings of the students are correct and to demonstrate OMM examination and treatment techniques, VCOM faculty will perform certain examinations and treatments (including OMM) as a part of assessing student performance and in the demonstration of examinations and treatments to students. Professionalism in the Peer-To-Peer Learning Environment The PPC/OMM laboratory is an environment where the student must learn appropriate and professional data gathering skills and physical examination skills on peers. The student is expected to maintain professional conduct at all times in the OMT laboratory with attention to and respect for the patient (in this case, their peer student laboratory partner). Paying attention to and providing respect for the patient (or peer student) includes respecting modesty, assuring a demeanor that allows for dignity, and assuring comfort. These assurances are made by both the faculty and students so students may learn the osteopathic examination and the osteopathic manipulative techniques taught within the course in a professional and safe environment. Intimate areas will not be examined by other students or faculty in the OMM course. Sensitive areas will be examined by peers and faculty in the course and are done in a professional and respectful manner. Examination of sensitive areas are a part of the osteopathic structural examination and osteopathic manipulative medicine treatments and so must be learned for successful completion of the curriculum. Peer student examinations will include examinations that follow the systems learning. These include the musculoskeletal system and extremities, the neurological system and head-eyes-ears-nose and throat, the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems, circulatory and lymphatics, and the gastrointestinal system. These examinations will include palpation and treatment of sensitive areas involving the bony, muscular, and neurological structures, will include the pelvis and buttocks (but not genitalia or rectum), and the ribcage near the breasts (but not the breasts). Students are advised that techniques exist that address various patient complaints/conditions/diagnoses of intimate areas that employ osteopathic manipulation of these anatomic regions; however, these techniques are beyond the osteopathic medical school curriculum and are learned under appropriate supervision in residency and/or advanced training courses. For the purpose of defining areas of the body that will frequently be referred to in the remainder of this document: • An intimate area refers to the breasts, anus, and genitalia. • Sensitive areas are those areas near the breasts, genitalia, or buttocks.


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