University of California, Riverside

School of Medicine

About LACE

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The Longitudinal Ambulatory Care Experience

The Longitudinal Ambulatory Care Experience (LACE) provides our first-, second-, and third-year students with an opportunity to utilize the skills they have learned in the classroom in a clinical setting.

Working with a faculty preceptor at designated clinical sites, LACE students train with diverse patient populations in settings that more accurately reflecting today’s health care delivery system. Most patients seeking medical care do so in an ambulatory setting, with approximately two-thirds of those seeing a primary-care physician.

LACE takes advantage of partnerships with a variety of practice groups, community clinics (including federally qualified health centers), and hospitals.

An Active, Ongoing Clinical Experience

poster presentationStudents begin LACE in their first year, continuing through the end of their third year, replacing the traditional “shadowing” preceptorship with an active ongoing clinical experience that emphasizes continuity and progressive learning across a three-year span.

Through LACE, our medical students have an extended opportunity to interact with attending physicians, peers and other health professionals, as well as the ability to observe longer-term outcomes associated with the health care decisions they make. This gives UCR SOM students an experiential advantage over students in short-block rotations where follow-up can be limited.

Participating practices are primary care-focused and selected for their suitability to expose students to the ambulatory delivery of care within the Inland Empire community.

Educational Goals and Outcomes

LACE bridges pre-clinical education with clinical training and the practical application of public health content through a sustained mentor-mentee relationship with primary-care providers. Through these supervised interactions, students integrate their acquired knowledge of anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, pharmacology, etc. as they work directly with patients. They develop skills and knowledge related to patient history-taking, physical exams, presentation, doctor-patient interaction and communication to improve a variety of core clinical competencies, including:

  • Systems-based practice.
  • Scholarship.
  • Patient care.
  • Community population health.
  • Interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Professionalism.

Preceptors at each site will serve to assist students by providing formative feedback concerning their performance. Students will also complete a Practice Improvement Project (PIP) annually to improve the provision of health care at their LACE sites.


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