Publications : 2019

Latessa R, Keen S, Byerley J, Foley K, Payne L, Conner K, Tarantino T, Peyser B, Steiner D. 2019. The North Carolina community preceptor experience: Third study of trends over twelve years. Acad Med 94(5):715–722. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000002571.


Purpose: To measure community-based preceptors’ overall satisfaction and motivations, the influence of students on preceptors’ practices, and compare with 2005 and 2011 studies.

Method: North Carolina primary care preceptors across disciplines (physicians, pharmacists, advanced practice nurses, physician assistants) received survey invitations via e-mail, fax, postcard, and/or full paper survey. Most questions in 2017 were the same as questions used in prior years, including satisfaction with precepting, likelihood to continue precepting, perceived influence of teaching students in their practice, and incentives for precepting. A brief survey or phone interview was conducted with 62 nonresponders. Chi-square tests were used to examine differences across discipline groups and to compare group responses over time.

Results: Of the 2,786 preceptors contacted, 893 (32.1%) completed questionnaires. Satisfaction (816/890; 91.7%) and likelihood of continuing to precept (778/890; 87.4%) remained unchanged from 2005 and 2011. However, more preceptors reported a negative influence for patient flow (422/888; 47.5%) in 2017 than in 2011 (452/1,266; 35.7%) and 2005 (496/1,379; 36.0%) (P < .0001), and work hours (392/889; 44.1%) in 2017 than in 2011 (416/1,268; 32.8%) and 2005 (463/1,392; 33.3%) (P < .0001). Importance of receiving payment for teaching increased from 32.2% (371/1,152) in 2011 to 46.4% (366/789) in 2017 (P < .0001).

Conclusions: This 2017 survey suggests preceptor satisfaction and likelihood to continue precepting have remained unchanged from prior years. However, increased reporting of negative influence of students on practice and growing value of receiving payment highlight growing concerns about preceptors’ time and finances and present a call to action.