How does feedback from patients impact upon healthcare student clinical skill development and learning? A systematic review

<p><b>Background:</b> A key feature of health professionals’ training, irrespective of discipline, is the acquisition and application of clinical and communication skills. Despite this, little is known about the potential role of patient feedback on this process. This systematic review aimed to answer the question: How does feedback from patients impact upon healthcare student clinical skill development and learning?</p> <p><b>Design:</b> Systematic review of published literature.</p> <p><b>Methods:</b> Electronic databases were searched for studies that explored the effects of patient feedback on student learning and were published before March 2016. Eligible articles underwent methodological evaluation using the McMaster University Critical Evaluation Forms and data extraction.</p> <p><b>Results:</b> A total of 237 articles were retrieved following searches of electronic databases and hand searches of reference lists. Twelve (7 quantitative, 2 qualitative, 3 mixed methods) studies met the inclusion criteria. Eleven studies reported that patient feedback improved students’ clinical skills.</p> <p><b>Conclusion:</b> Minimal research has explored the impact of patient feedback on student learning. The research to date suggests that direct feedback from patients may be beneficial for the development of students’ communication and clinical skills; however, the wide variety of evaluation methods and the lack of validated tools for patients to provide feedback suggest that further exploration is warranted.</p>