Stanford School of Medicine
Course Catalog

MED 343B. Palliative Care Clerkship (SUMC, PAVAMC, SCVMC)

S1 Open to Visitors

Courses      Clerkships

Teaches the natural history, prognostication, and management of serious life limiting illnesses. Emphasis is placed on acquiring the knowledge, skills, and attitudes desirable in a compassionate clinician-scholar physician. Students record history (with special assessment to symptoms, functional assessment, mood and cognitive assessment), physical examination, and pertinent laboratory data for patients for whom they are responsible and present their findings, together with their diagnoses and management care plans, at rounds, and daily team meetings. Provision of patient centered care is continuously emphasized. An essential aspect of the clerkship is the students’ gradual assumption of direct responsibility for, and full-time involvement in, care of patients with serious illness with the house staff, fellows and faculty team. To best leverage the differences in patient populations and faculty of the three core hospitals, students spend two weeks at VA Palo Alto Medical Center in-patient palliative care unit , and two weeks on the palliative care consult service at Stanford Hospital and Clinics as well as in our affiliated home hospice agencies (visitors students may be based only at SHC and VA Palo Alto Medical Center) . The resulting four week experience is an organized learning experience designed to cover the essentials of palliative medicine. A passing grade will require both a satisfactory performance at both clinical sites and a successful 30 minute formal presentation on palliative care topic of interest (student will discuss ideas with Course Director to identify potential topics). Course highlights include (a) mentoring from the course director and or a cadre of mentors including Attendings and Fellows (b) focus on skill building and practice with special focus on communication skills (c) opportunity to work closely with multiple disciplines (d) learning to care for the patient and their family as the unit of care.

MED 300A.

Periods Available
1-12, for 2 or 4 weeks. 2 students per period.

Reporting Instructions:
Where: Report on Day 1 at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System to coordinators office : 3801, Miranda Avenue 100-Modular T5, Palo Alto, CA 94394. Time: 8:30 am.

Units 6       Drop Code T       Call Code 0

VJ Periyakoil, M.D. (

Other Faculty

Maral Boursalian (408-410-8592,

* "S1"=Selective Clerkship Category I (Basics in Clinical Care)
"S2"=Selective Clerkship Category II (Subinternship)


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