In a school-wide email to faculty and students, Dean Giles announced the introduction of a new course replacing existing pharmacology classes.
Stating that patients are much more likely to describe the color and shape of their pills than remember their names, Giles proudly introduced the new course in the email. “We anticipate an increase of at least 40% in the rate of medication-identification by students,” the email announced.
Commenting on the new changes, internal medicine resident Jane Hogworth said the new course should help medical students identify at least half the pills patients describe to them.
Dr. Hogworth admitted she is still puzzled at some medications her patients take. “90% of middle-aged men mention a blue pill that lowers their blood pressure with effects that can last up to four hours,” she said. “Is it hydrochlorothiazide, or spironolactone, or something else?” She asked with visible frustration.
A review of consultation records written by students in the emergency department show a 50:50 split between misspelled medication names and a myriad of physical descriptions. The following is an excerpt taken from a patient record:
2. Purple pill
3. White pill that makes patient constipated
4. Slightly smaller purple pill that patient takes in the morning and tastes like an overdone schnitzel
5. Vitamin D”
The final exam will reportedly consist of a coloring book asking students to match pills with their shapes. An extra-credit question will ask advanced students to do blind tasting of different medications to identify them based on taste and texture.