This sounds like a good step in helping medical professionals achieve their goals. However, I fear pre-Med students will take over duties that should be undertaken by those with an actual MD. Too often, I have seen veterans receiving care from those not trained to provide that care. The doctor will report results of the examination to the attending, yet how can one trust the interpretation of someone who is not well versed in a very specialized area of medicine such as neurology? Why would a psychiatry intern perform neurological tests on a veteran without the attending being present? An OB-GYN? A medical student?
Of course this all depends on who is running a particular VA hospital, allowing such circumstances to occur. It is one thing to shadow, quite another to perform neurological examinations which require knowledge of nuances of disease presentation.
When visiting civilian doctors, sometimes they have a medical student, intern, or resident shadowing them. The attending is present performing the exam, while explaining different responses or outcomes. I have yet to observe this at the VA. Not saying shadowing programs are not performed as intended, yet I have observed veterans not receiving the care required. Again, it depends on the particular hospital and who is in charge. So I fear this well intentioned program will benefit everyone but the veterans.