psychiatry; COVID-19; survey; medical students; residents; health care; graduate medical education; internship and residency; pandemics; psychology


Medical Education | Psychiatry



In 2020, the global COVID-19 pandemic caused educational disruptions to many medical students nationally. Societal and hospital guidelines, including social distancing protocols, resulted in the cancellation or postponement of many elective procedures. A shortage in personal protective equipment also contributed to restrictions in clinical experiences for trainees. The purpose of this study was to determine resident-perceived preparedness in core clinical competencies and evaluate the disruptions to core clerkships.


A survey was developed to assess self-perceptions of clinical competencies and disruptions to core clerkship experiences. It was distributed to 63 incoming psychiatric residents who were matched to training programs in the United States.


The survey response rate was 97%. The majority of respondents achieved self-expected levels of proficiency in clinical skills. Deficits were greatest for pelvic/rectal exams and transitions of care. Most students did not experience disruptions to clerkships. Internal medicine, obstetrics, and gynecology clerkships reported the highest rates of virtual completion. Procedures with the lowest reported perceived preparation were arterial puncture, airway management, and IV placement, respectively.


Our survey results indicated that most learners did not perceive disruptions to their medical education and incoming psychiatry residents felt well-prepared to start residency. Some specific procedural skills appear to have been affected. Attempts to mitigate these specific inadequacies may help mitigate disruptions due to future events.