Procedural Competence in Internal Medicine Residents: Validity of a Central Venous Catheter Insertion Assessment Instrument

Grace C. Huang, Lori R. Newman, Richard M. Schwartzstein, Peter F. Clardy, David Feller-Kopman, Julie T. Irish, C. Christopher Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: Despite mandates from accreditation bodies for programs to ensure procedural competence, standardized measures do not exist to assess residents' skills in performing central venous catheter (CVC) insertion. The objective of the present study was to develop an instrument to assess residents in subclavian (SC) CVC insertion, to set performance standards, and to validate the tool using performance data. METHOD: In 2007, the authors convened experts to create an assessment tool for CVC insertion using a modified Delphi method. They applied the Angoff method to a second set of experts to determine minimum passing scores (MPSs) for both the borderline trainee and the competent trainee. Two faculty evaluators then used the checklist to assess residents performing CVCs on simulators. RESULTS: The authors created and experts confirmed a 24-item checklist. Using the Angoff method, the MPS required completion of 10 major and 2 minor criteria for a trainee to show borderline proficiency with CVC insertion under supervision. This MPS was correlated with a global rating of 2 on a 5-point scale. The MPS for competence was 17 major and 5 minor criteria. None of the residents deemed competent on a global rating scale achieved the MPS for competence. CONCLUSIONS: The authors were able to create and validate a consensus-driven procedural assessment tool with data-driven standards for basic proficiency and competence that faculty can use to assess residents as they perform CVC insertion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1127-1134
Number of pages8
JournalAcademic Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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