"The nonphysician medical educator" by Riesenberg and colleagues includes three topics: the history of medical education, the participation of nurses and allied health professionals as medical educators, and the growth of medical education programs.
Each introduced a set of questions deserving further inquiry that might be categorized into the following themes: defining history, linking to conceptual models, cataloguing master's programs, and establishing evidence. In terms of history, it is useful to look at the broader context of the early 20th century and reflect on why physicians reached out to nonphysician educators.
Riesenberg and colleagues' illustrative review of teaching by nurses and allied health professionals raised multiple interesting possibilities for linking to conceptual models stemming from, for example, communication, teamwork, and coteaching theories. Regarding the multitude of master's in medical education programs and certificates, perhaps it is time to develop and maintain a listing of programs with detailed descriptions of target audiences and curricula.
Finally, there are multiple ways that the observations made by Riesenberg and colleagues might be better informed by data. Why is there not more literature that documents the importance of and contributions by nonclinician nonphysician educators? Several potential reasons are provided. Overall, the message that clinical nonphysicians can be successful educators came through loud and clear.