Virtual Patient Training to Improve Reproductive Health Care for Women With Intellectual Disabilities

Sara E. Boyd, Carla L. Sanders, Harold L. Kleinert, Marlene B. Huff, Sharon Lock, Stephanie Johnson, Kim Clevenger, Nathania A. Bush, Eileen Van Dyke, Tara L. Clark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


A multimedia virtual patient module, involving the case of a young woman with mild intellectual disabilities with a complaint of diffuse abdominal pain, was developed as a clinical training tool for students in health care professions. Primary objectives following use of the module included improved knowledge and reduced perception of difficulty in treating women's health patients with intellectual disabilities. The module was developed using an iterative, collaborative process of a core development team that included medical professionals, multimedia specialists, the parent of a child with intellectual disability, and a disability advocate. Over the course of the module, students were required to identify appropriate and effective clinician-patient interactions in addition to relevant medical and developmental concerns for this patient population. Pilot data from a sample of nursing, physician assistant, and medical students suggest that the module is an effective tool for both improving students' knowledge and reducing their perception of difficulty in providing care to women's health patients with intellectual disabilities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)453-460
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Midwifery and Women's Health
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2008


  • health disparities
  • intellectual disabilities
  • mental retardation
  • reproductive health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Maternity and Midwifery


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