Professionalism and Professional Values in Orthopaedics

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Abstract

During a consensus conference in Fall, 1998, the Academic Orthopaedic Society identified the values and qualities of professionalism as defined by its members. One hundred eighty-six respondents rated 20 characteristics and values describing professionalism, based on the extent to which they believed each item was appropriate. The five items receiving highest average ratings were: integrity, trustworthiness, responsibility, reliability, and accountability. Principal components analysis yielded five factors that captured 62% of the total variability. These factors were labeled respect and relationships, altruism, accountability and reliability, integrity, and excellence. The authors anticipate that the Academic Orthopaedic Society will find these data useful, and incorporate this information into their decisions concerning evaluation of current residents and applicants to their programs. An additional challenge will be to develop a values curriculum (formal curriculum) and a learning environment (informal curriculum) that will encourage residents and faculty to aspire to the highest in professional values and professional conduct.

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