This study examined a cohort of students attending the Uniformed Services University regarding their attitudes toward medical care in underserved populations. Using the previously validated Medical Student Attitudes Toward the Underserved (MSATU), repeated measures analysis of variance showed that student attitudes toward care in underserved populations was less favorable than limited national data at entry and declined over time (Mean MSATU total score Year 1: 46.2 [SD 10.95]; Year 4: 41.7 [SD 12.3] p < 0.01). Differences in medical school debt, exposure to underserved populations, and the definition of “service” in the context of active duty military status might explain some of our findings. Providing broad service learning opportunities within the curriculum could increase student exposure to underserved populations and strengthen the social contract between community and institution.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health