Ultrasound technology has come a long way since the start of my career. Once the size of washing machines, the latest versions of ultrasound technology have evolved so that they are no bigger than an electric razor—small enough to fit into the pocket of a white coat or a black bag. Image quality has improved as well. It has been exciting to see the ultrasound machine evolve into something small, sleek, and relatively affordable.
As imaging technology has evolved, we needed to think differently about how we educated our students and residents. In the realm of diagnosis, point of care ultrasound is extremely helpful. While it does not replace a diagnostic ultrasound, the capabilities at the point of care continue to grow creating a potential for enhanced quality of patient care. Educationally, learning about ultrasound prepares our future physicians for patient care and simultaneously serves as cognitive scaffolding for learning the medicine and science underpinning the procedure being performed.
We want to embrace the very best of what becomes available for the care of our patients and the education of our learners and be quick to include these high-quality approaches in our educational program. By doing this, the IU School of Medicine is and will remain at the forefront of medical education nationally.
Paul M. Wallach, MD Executive Associate Dean for Educational Affairs and Institutional Improvement
Curriculum: Overview and Timeframe for Implementation
Procedures for Equipment Checkout
Point of Care Ultrasound (PoCUS) equipment is now available for short-term check out for both faculty and students at each campus using the rooms.iu.edu reservation site. However, you must first create a PoCUS account in the rooms.iu.edu site prior to reserving equipment.
It may take up to 24 hours for your account creation confirmation. Once confirmed, you are able to reserve equipment through rooms.iu.edu. Please bring the reservation confirmation when you pick up equipment. Follow the instructions CAREFULLY for a successful account creation and reservation process.
Important reminder: Per IU School of Medicine policy, students may use this equipment for educational purposes only. Student use in the clinical setting without DIRECT FACULTY SUPERVISION is strictly prohibited. Volunteer student patients must have signed the Ultrasound Education Information Sheet and Consent form available through MSAS. No exceptions.
PoCUS Equipment Pick-Up and Return Location and Hours
When: Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Where: Gatch Hall (Clinical Building), first floor, Room CL 121
When: Monday – Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
When: Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Where: Second floor of the Stone Family Center for Health Sciences, Office 2005
When: Mondays – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Where: The front office, suite 111, in the Med Ed Building
When: Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Where: The Muncie Center Main Office, MT 201
When: Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Where: Indiana University Northwest – School of Medicine Dunes Medical Professional Building, Room MP 2007
Why is Point of Care Ultrasound (PoCUS) being instituted throughout medical school curriculum?
Ultrasound is an imaging tool that can be used in the classroom, lab or at the bedside to help students learn anatomy, physiology and pathology in a more dynamic way than traditional methods. By allowing students to actually visualize underlying anatomic structures, physical exam techniques can be verified in real time while learning these skills. Ultrasound can also provide a visual representation of different physiologic and pathologic states, complementing traditional teaching methodologies.
Because PoCUS has and continues to see significant growth within an ever-increasing array of medical specialties, learning how to use and perform PoCUS exams will give our students an edge as they move into residency and ultimately clinical practice.
Will I be assessed on the PoCUS examinations we learn in the scanning labs?
As you progress throughout the curriculum, various levels of assessment will be implemented. Assessment type could include questions incorporated into unit tests, pre-work quizzes and skills assessment.
Is there any time to practice scanning outside of the course scan labs?
Open Labs are scheduled periodically in Gatch Hall on Friday afternoons for M1/M2 students. See the IUSM Calendar of Events for dates/times/room.
These labs have a qualified instructor available for guidance, if you need assistance.
You must bring another student willing to act as your volunteer patient. Your volunteer patient must have signed the Ultrasound Education Information Sheet and Consent form available through MSAS. No exceptions.
Open Labs are scheduled periodically in Fairbanks Hall for M3/M4 students. See the IUSM Calendar of Events for dates/times/room.
Qualified instructors are not available for assistance during these labs.
You can bring another student willing to act as your volunteer patient. However, your volunteer patient must have signed the Ultrasound Education Information Sheet and Consent form available through MSAS. No exceptions.
How do I request a PoCUS device so I can practice scanning?
Students can set up an account on rooms.iu.edu, which you will use to request a reservation for a PoCUS device. Link with job aid
Be advised, the partner you are scanning must have a completed waiver on file in MSAS forms.
Can I use the PoCUS device in the clinical setting?
We hope that all of our students will have the opportunity to use PoCUS throughout their clinical training. However, because this technology is new, not all of our physician educators will know how to use PoCUS and incorporate those findings into their clinical practice. Students will need to ask permission of their immediate supervising physician, if PoCUS is appropriate to use while they are under their supervision. It is important for students to respect this decision and remember that clinical use without DIRECT FACULTY SUPERVISION is strictly forbidden.
Where do I find announcements related to PoCUS?
Open Lab Times: Watch for announcements in the MD Student News publications. You can also visit: IUSM Events for currently scheduled opportunities