May 22, 2024  
Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine Catalog 2014-2015 
Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine Catalog 2014-2015 [Archived Catalog]

Health and Technical Standards

Health and Technical Standards for Admission and Graduation

All persons who seek admission, enrollment and graduation from the educational programs of the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine must meet health and technical standards. The Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree signifies the holder is a physician prepared for entry into the practice of medicine; it follows that all graduates must have the knowledge and skills to function in a broad variety of clinical situations and be able to provide a wide spectrum of patient care.

A candidate for the D.O. degree must have abilities and skills in five areas: observation; communication; motor and sensory; intellectual-conceptual; and behavioral and social as well as be able to comply with established patient safety measures. Physician and patient safety during clinical encounters throughout the continuum of medical education are of utmost importance.

Technological compensation can be made for some disabilities in certain areas, but a candidate should be able to perform in a reasonably independent manner. The use of a trained intermediary means a candidate’s judgment must be mediated by someone else’s power of selection and observation.

A. Abilities and Skills

1. Observation. The candidate must be able to observe demonstrations and experiments in the basic sciences including, but not limited to, microbiologic cultures, microscopic studies of microorganisms and tissues in normal and pathologic states, and reading of EKGs and radiographs. A candidate must be able to observe a patient accurately at a distance and close at hand. Observation requires the functional use of the sense of vision and somatic sensations such as touch, pressure and temperature. It is enhanced by the functional use of the sense of smell.

2. Communication. A candidate shall be able to speak, hear and observe patients in order to elicit information, describe changes in mood, activity and posture, and perceive nonverbal communications. A candidate must be able to communicate effectively and sensitively with patients. Communication includes speaking, reading and writing. The candidate must be able to communicate effectively and efficiently in oral and written form with all members of the health-care team.

3. Motor and Sensory. Candidates shall have sufficient motor function to elicit information from patients by palpation, auscultation, percussion and other diagnostic and therapeutic maneuvers. A candidate shall be able to do basic laboratory tests (urinalysis, CBC, etc.) and carry out diagnostic procedures such as proctoscopy, pap smears and arthrocentesis. A candidate shall be able to execute motor movements reasonably required to provide general care, osteopathic manipulation and emergency treatment to patients. Examples of emergency treatment reasonably required of physicians are cardiopulmonary resuscitation, the administration of intravenous medication, the application of pressure to stop bleeding, the opening of obstructed airways, the suturing of simple wounds and the performance of simple obstetrical maneuvers. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium and functional use of the senses of touch and vision.

In addition, a candidate should be able to execute these procedures within prescribed time limitations relative to the context of a practicing physician.

Osteopathic students and physicians, in particular, utilize the tool of touch as part of the osteopathic approach to diagnosis and treatment. As part of the learning process, candidates must be able to practice being touched, as well as touching others, in a sensitive, professional manner. Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) training modalities will be performed on and by students as part of the curriculum requirements for the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree.

4. Intellectual. Candidates must possess conceptual, integrative and quantitative abilities. These abilities include measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis and synthesis. Problem solving, the critical skill demanded of physicians, requires all of these intellectual abilities. In addition, candidates shall be able to comprehend three-dimensional relationships in order to understand the spatial relationships of structures.

5. Behavior and Social Attributes. Candidates must have the mental health required for full use of their intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, the prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients and the development of mature, sensitive and effective relationships with patients. Candidates must be able to tolerate physically taxing workloads and function effectively under stress. They must be able to adapt to changing environments, and learn to function in the face of uncertainties inherent in the clinical problems of many patients. Compassion, integrity, concern for others, interpersonal skills, interest and motivation are all personal qualities that will be assessed during the admissions and education process.

B. Patient Safety Measures

1. Infectious Diseases. Health-care providers in contact with patients are at risk for contracting and transmitting infectious diseases, especially those having compromised immune systems. All health care providers must maintain immunization requirements that are established for their own protection and that of served populations against preventable communicable illness.

The Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine requires documentation of immunization and vaccination of all students. Requirements are guided by current recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for healthcare personnel.

Prior to matriculation, students are expected to receive required immunizations/vaccinations and provide documentation of proof of immunity. Influenza immunization is required during flu season.

If a student is unable to provide documentation, he/she is considered unvaccinated.

Please consult the Medical Student Immunization/ Vaccination Requirements and Proof of Immunity policy for details on each vaccination requirement and documentation of immunity.

Tuberculosis (TB) screening is also required of all incoming students and students participating in summer programs involving clinical activities through Heritage College.  Please consult the Tuberculosis Screening Policy for guideline details and  recommendations.

Students who are accepted to Heritage College and students on the alternate list will receive a letter explaining immunization and serologic proof of immunity requirements and the Immunization Status Report form from Academic Affairs.

Charges for immunizations and antibody titers are the responsibility of the student.

2. Criminal Background Check. Ohio Law mandates criminal records checks for all prospective employees in positions where the individual will be caring for older adults (Senate Bill 160) or children (Senate Bill 38). A standard criterion in affiliation agreements with clinical training sites, especially in pediatrics and geriatrics, is a requirement of a criminal record check for students. Review of an applicant’s character and conduct as a citizen is important to his or her future licensure as a practicing physician. At the time of matriculation, those candidates who have been an Ohio resident for five years or more must present proof that they have had a criminal background check completed through the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation (BCI). If the candidate is not an Ohio resident or has been an Ohio resident for less than five years, he or she must request that the BCI obtain information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The candidate must give permission to Heritage College to obtain a copy of any arrest or conviction record in the BCI files.

The Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine is committed to making its medical programs accessible to people with disabilities. In order to receive accommodations, the candidate or student must document the need and make a request through the college’s Office of Student Affairs. For incoming, as well as enrolled students, the request should be submitted at least one semester before the accommodations are needed. Reasonable accommodations can be made for some disabilities in certain of these technical areas. With reasonable accommodation, a candidate still must be able to perform in a reasonably independent manner, the essential functions and tasks required in the five ability and skill areas noted above under Section A.