Factors associated with producing a scientific publication during medical training: evidence from a cross-sectional study of 40 medical schools surveyed in Latin America
Scientific publication during medical training is key to promote enduring cutting-edge knowledge. The promotion of science among medical students in Latin America is a multi-sphere issue hampered by the unawareness of governments to invest in national research, as well as a lack of support from local universities. This study aims to determine the factors associated with producing a scientific publication during medical training among Latin American medical students of local scientific
... cientific societies. Methods: This is a secondary data analysis of a cross-sectional study initially conducted in 2016 to evaluate the use of information and communications technologies (TICs) among medical students of 40 local scientific societies of medical students affiliated to the Latin American Federation of Medical Students Scientific Societies (FELSOCEM, in Spanish). Teams in each local scientific society surveyed self-reported scientific publications and explored its association with socioeconomic, academic, and research training conditions. We included medical students enrolled in the 2016-I term and excluded medical interns. We implemented nested models to identify covariates associated with self-reported scientific publication until reaching a parsimonious mixed-effect multilevel model clustered by medical scientific society. Results: We surveyed 11,587 medical students. The prevalence of scientific publications increased in 36% among medical students affiliated to a Scientific Society of Medical Students [parsimonious prevalence ratio (PRp)=1.36, 95%CI=1.16–1.59], 51% among medical students with advanced English proficiency [PRp=1.51, 95%CI=1.21 – 1.87], 85% among medical students who attended a scientific writing skills course [PRp=1.85, 95%CI=1.59–2.15], 81% among medical students who use Sci-Hub [PRp=1.81, 95%CI=1.50–2.20], and 108% among medical students who have access to a pirated academic account [PRp=2.08, 95%CI=1.83–2.36]. Conclusions: Producing a scientific publication among medical students is associated with being affiliated to a Scientific Society of Medical Students, English proficiency, training in scientific writing, use of Sci-Hub, and pirated academic accounts.