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Quasi-experimental study on the effectiveness of a house officer preparatory course for medical graduates on self-perceived confidence and readiness: a study protocol
  1. Aneesa Abdul Rashid1,
  2. Sazlina Shariff Ghazali1,
  3. Iliana Mohamad2,
  4. Maliza Mawardi1,
  5. Dalila Roslan3,
  6. Husna Musa4
  1. 1 Department of Family Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Malaysia
  2. 2 Medigrow, Medicorp Resources, Batu Caves, Malaysia
  3. 3 Centre for Disease Control Department, Kuala Pilah District Health Office, Kuala Pilah, Malaysia
  4. 4 Department of Pedeatrics, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Malaysia
  1. Correspondence to Aneesa Abdul Rashid; aneesa{at}


Introduction Being a house officer (HO) is said to be associated with high levels of stress, leading to mental health problems and sometimes to quitting the medical profession altogether. In Malaysia, the number of HOs completing training on time is slowly declining, with increasing annual dropout rates. Feeling incompetent is one of the contributors towards this growing problem. This study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of a 3-day pre-HO intervention module in addressing participants’ confidence, readiness and psychological well-being in preparation for their HO training.

Methods and analysis The pre-HO intervention is the ‘Medicorp’ module that includes clerkship, experience sharing, hands-on skills training, common clinical cases and introduction of the local healthcare system. This is a pre-post quasi-experimental study lasting 1 year, with three assessment time points—at pretraining, immediately after training and 1 month into the participants’ HO-ship. The study is currently ongoing and involves 208 participants who attended the course in Malaysia. Participants with known psychiatric illness, working HOs and medical students are excluded. A pretested, self-administered questionnaire that includes baseline sociodemography, adaptation of the International Medical University (IMU) Student Competency Survey and the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale has been adopted, and 1 month follow-up will be conducted by telephone. Data will be analysed using SPSS V.24. The primary outcome is change in confidence level, while the secondary outcomes are changes in the readiness and psychological well-being of the participants.

Ethics and dissemination This study protocol has received ethics approval from Ethics Committee for Research Involving Human Subjects Universiti Putra Malaysia and the National Medical Research Registry Malaysia. Written informed consent has been obtained from each participant. Results will be disseminated through journals and conferences, especially those involved in medical education specifically looking into the training of medical doctors.

Trial registration number NCT03510195.

  • houseman
  • anxiety disorders
  • stress
  • depression & mood disorders

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  • Contributors Study conception and design: AAR, SSG, IM, HM, DR and MM. Intervention design: IM, HM and AAR. Data collection will be carried out by IM and AAR. Analysis of data will be done by SSG, MM and AAR. AAR drafted the work and was revised critically for intellectual content by SSG, IM, MM, DR and HM. All authors gave final approval of this version to be published.

  • Funding This study has been funded by University Putra Malaysia (UPM) University Community and Transformation Centre (UCTC) (grant no. UPM/UCTC900/3/2/KTGS-05-18).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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