Clinical practice domain lead
Adelaide Medical School
Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
Jo (Josephine) Thomas is a Specialist General Physician and Clinical Pharmacologist. She works in General Internal Medicine at The Royal Adelaide Hospital. She also coordinates a number of programs for the MBBS at The University of Adelaide. She graduated from Flinders University South Australia in 1990 and worked in General Practice in Sydney and Adelaide, before pursuing Physician Training. She is involved in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate students in pharmacy and medicine. She is currently undertaking a PhD in Interprofessional learning.
I am currently undertaking a PhD in Clinical Education. My thesis focuses on research, which examines how prelicensure pharmacy and medicine students perceive interprofessional learning. The care of multimorbid patients with multiple medications is increasingly common and necessitates a collaborative working relationship between healthcare providers. The traditional relationship between medicine and pharmacy professions is characterised by a strong power differential which may impede collaborative practice and adversely impact patient care. Healthcare students from different professional backgrounds are often brought together under the banner of Interprofessional Education in an effort to improve collaborative practice. How the power differential between these professions impacts on interprofessional learning is not well understood. Overall, a more nuanced understanding of what pre-registration students think and experience in learning with students from another professional group is needed.
Date Position Institution name 2018 - 2019 Academic Lead for development of the Bachelor of Medical Studies/Doctor of Medicine program Unversity of Adelaide 2017 - 2018 MBBS Program Coordinator Adelaide Medical School 2010 Clinical Studies Advisor- Senior Lecturer in Clinical Education/Medicine University of Adelaide 2009 - 2014 Deputy Director of Clinical training Royal Adelaide Hospital 2006 Staff Specialist in General Medicine Royal Adelaide Hospital
Awards and Achievements
Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount 2018 Recognition Medicine Writing Group Chair, AMC Clinical Assessment Panel Australian Medical Council Australia — 2017 Fellowship Awarded fellowship of the Australian and New Zealand Association for Health Professional Educators 2017 Australian and New Zealand Association for Health Professional Educators 2017 Australia — 2016 Award Mark Bonnin Teaching Award University of Adelaide Australia — 2016 Award Executive Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching (level C) University of Adelaide Australia — 2015 Teaching Award Mark Bonnin Teaching award University of Adelaide Australia — 2013 Teaching Award Mark Bonnin Award University of Adelaide Australia — 2012 Teaching Award Mark Bonnin Award University of Adelaide Australia — 2011 Teaching Award Professor Derek Frewin AO Citation University of Adelaide Australia — 2010 Teaching Award Professor Derek Frewin AO Citation for Clinical Teaching University of Adelaide Australia —
Language Competency English Can read, write, speak, understand spoken and peer review
Date Institution name Country Title 1983 - 1990 Flinders University, Adelaide Australia B.M. B.S.
Date Title Institution Country 2005 - 2007 Fellowship Royal Australasian College Physicians (Clinical Pharmacology) Royal Australasian College of Physicians, Sydney Australia 2000 - 2005 Fellowship Royal Australasian College Physicians (General Medicine) Royal Australasian College of Physicians, Sydney Australia 1992 - 1997 Fellowship Royal Australian College of General Practitioners Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, East Melbourne Australia
Year Citation 2018 Thomas, J. (2018). The clinician educator as qualitative researcher. Clinical Teacher.
2018 Thomas, J., Kumar, K., & Chur-Hansen, A. (2018). What does learning together mean for pharmacy and medicine students: is it really about from and with?. MedEdPublish, 7(2).
2018 Thomas, J., & Eastley, T. (2018). The educational challenge of End-of-Life conversations for our junior doctors. Archives of Medicine and Health Sciences, 6(1), 152.
2017 Thomas, J., Gilbert, T., & Thompson, C. (2017). Preparing the future workforce for healthcare in Australia. Future Hospital Journal, 4(1), 67-71.
DOI Europe PMC1
2017 Fazal, M., Andrews, J., Thomas, J., & Saffouri, E. (2017). Inpatient iron deficiency detection and management: how do general physicians and gastroenterologists perform in a tertiary care hospital?. Internal Medicine Journal, 47(8), 928-932.
2016 Shakib, S., Dundon, B., Maddison, J., Thomas, J., Stanners, M., Caughey, G., & Clark, R. (2016). Effect of a multidisciplinary outpatient model of care on health outcomes in older patients with multimorbidity: a retrospective case control study. PLoS ONE, 11(8), e0161382-1-e0161382-11.
DOI Scopus4 WoS4 Europe PMC1
2015 Thomas, J., Gillard, D., Khor, M., Hakendorf, P., & Thompson, C. (2015). A comparison of educational interventions to improve prescribing by junior doctors. QJM: an international journal of medicine, 108(5), 369-377.
DOI Scopus7 WoS6 Europe PMC5
2014 Thomas, J., Koo, M., Shakib, S., Wu, J., & Khanal, S. (2014). Impact of a compulsory final year medical student curriculum on junior doctor prescribing. Internal Medicine Journal, 44(2), 156-160.
DOI Scopus4 WoS3 Europe PMC2
2014 Calabretto, J., Thomas, J., Rossi, S., & Beilby, J. (2014). Medical student experiences of a smartphone-delivered drug information resource. Electronic Journal of Health Informatics, 8(2), 1-11. 2013 Pirbhai, A., Kahawita, S., Davis, G., Dodd, T., Thomas, J., & Selvakumar, D. (2013). Hepatocellular carcinoma metastasis to sphenoid wing. Orbit, 32(2), 132-133.
DOI Scopus5 Europe PMC4
2013 Thomas, J., & Crowhurst, T. (2013). Exertional heat stroke, rhabdomyolysis and susceptibility to malignant hyperthermia. Internal Medicine Journal, 43(9), 1035-1038.
DOI Scopus16 WoS13 Europe PMC9
2012 Barton, L., Futtermenger, J., Gaddi, Y., Kang, A., Rivers, J., Spriggs, D., . . . Thomas, J. (2012). Simple prescribing errors and allergy documentation in medical hospital admissions in Australia and New Zealand. Clinical Medicine, 12(2), 119-123.
DOI Scopus14 WoS15 Europe PMC7
2012 Toh, D., Thompson, C., Thomas, J., & Faunt, J. (2012). Emergency department overcrowding and mortality after the introduction of the 4-hour rule in Western Australia. Medical Journal of Australia, 196(8), 499-500.
DOI Scopus3 WoS3 Europe PMC5
2012 Toh, D., Thompson, C., Thomas, J., & Faunt, J. (2012). Emergency department overcrowding and mortality after the introduction of the 4-hour rule in Western Australia.. The Medical journal of Australia, 196(8).
2010 Thomas, J., & Thompson, C. (2010). Omitting family history from the hospital admission. Medical Journal of Australia, 192(12), 676-677.
DOI Scopus1 WoS1
Year Citation 2018 Thomas, J. S., Kumar, K., & Chur-Hansen, A. (2018). Is it really about, from and with?. In ANZAHPE. Tasmania. 2018 Thomas, J. S. (2018). Sustaining interprofessionality, from classroom to workplace and beyond. In ANZAHPE. Tasmania. 2017 Thomas, J. (2017). My transition – Navigating the journey from clinician to qualitative researcher and some pit stops in between. In ANZAHPE. Adelaide. 2016 Thomas, J. (2016). Interprofessional learning and development of professional identity. In ANZAHPE. Perth.
Year Citation 2013 Thomas, J. S., Vitry, A., & Marker, J. (2013). STUDENT PERCEPTIONS OF A CONSUMER LED DISCUSSION GROUP FORMAT TO IMPROVE AWARENESS OF THE PATIENT PERSPECTIVE. Poster session presented at the meeting of ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY. WILEY-BLACKWELL.
As an active clinician I am passionate about the practice of medicine and seek to inspire students to practice to the best of their ability. As a clinical educator I seek to utilise effective learning techniques and to maximise experiential learning. I believe in providing students with a range of learning opportunities and styles to cater for the different learning styles of a diversity of learners. Therefore, I like to provide a mixture of online modules, face-to-face tutorials, didactic sessions and practical sessions in order to facilitate the learning of all students.
Developing a lifelong practice of self-directed learning is a requirement to maintain currency for practice in medicine. Therefore, I believe a graded approach to self-reliance and increasing responsibility is useful. It is vital to treat students as adult learners. In particular, acknowledging prior learning and transferable skills is important in reinforcing the value of students’ opinions, encouraging independence and the facilitating development of professional identity. This is most important in the later years of the medical program, where students have a range of relevant experiences to draw on from the clinical learning environment and their life experience.
Clinical Education requires a safe environment for learning, which minimises any harm to patients but allows learners to develop skills. Building a culture of safety involves: opportunities for simulation and practice before undertaking procedures on patients; empowering students to speak up when they are uncertain or have concerns about safety; providing clear guidance for scope of practice; utilising all team members in clinical learning. My commitment to interprofessional learning and interprofessional practice is part of this philosophy.
I see reflection as a valuable tool to maximise learning, it is particularly beneficial where there has been some challenge to the student’s values and attitudes in the learning activity. It can facilitate resolution of this dissonance, facilitate deeper levels of learning, and helps to build resilience (which is valuable for developing a robust health professional). I incorporate reflection where appropriate to enhance learning activities, either as a formative activity (eg debrief after clinical encounters) or as a more formal assignment. I am explicit with students about the value of reflection, in order to promote this as a tool for professional life.
I believe my enthusiasm for clinical medicine and diagnosis is a catalyst for students to develop their own interest in learning. My willingness to debate diagnoses and discuss clinical cases stimulates student interest in further learning. I take care to point students toward additional resources, which are of high quality, so that their further reading is valuable and time efficient.
I coordinate the Transition to internship course in the final year of the MBBS, which aims to prepare students for work as an intern. In the 2017 National survey of Intern work readiness the University of Adelaide performed very well: The survey asked questions with regard to 45 skills in eight skill groups. University of Adelaide medical school achieved an overall perceived preparedness score of 4.22 (which was significantly above the national average of 3.8).
One of the innovative teaching activities I have introduced in year 3 clinical practice course is the “cancer voices” workshop. This is a collaboration with Cancer voices SA and involves people affected by a cancer diagnosis (patients and carers) sharing their story with a small group of students. The aim is to increase student awareness of the impact of a cancer diagnosis; enable them to appreciate a patient perspective and potentially adopt changes in practice as a result of their learning. Students complete a guided reflection to enhance their learning from the experience.
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