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Physician preferences for continuing medical education with a focus on the topic of antimicrobial resistance: Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America


OBJECTIVE: To determine the type of media preferred for continuing medical education (CME) and to assess the factors that affect physician preferences for CME in general and on the special topic of antimicrobial resistance.

DESIGN: A voluntary survey of the membership of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, Inc. (SHEA).

METHODS: SHEA, in collaboration with other medical societies and with technical assistance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, designed and mailed the survey to its membership. The survey included questions about media used, preferred, and of interest to try for CME delivery in general and on the topic of antimicrobial resistance in specific. The survey also included demographic and general questions, such as work environment, percentage of time in direct patient care, and experience treating patients with antimicrobial-resistant pathogens.

RESULTS: 225 SHEA members completed the survey. The majority of physicians were in clinical practice (59%) and worked in a hospital (57%). The median year of graduation from medical school was 1979 (range, 1951-1999). CME subject matter (46%) was ranked as the most important factor affecting media preference. Journal articles (52%) were the most frequently used educational medium; local grand rounds (53%) and regional meetings (53%) were the most preferred media. CD-ROM (56%) and the Internet (46%) were selected as media of greatest interest to try. On the topic of antimicrobial resistance, the most frequently used and the preferred medium was journal articles (67% and 87%, respectively). Most (94%) had received an educational update on current antimicrobial resistance issues within the past year. Stratification of the data by graduation date revealed no significant differences in the medical education media used most (F=0.59, degrees of freedom [dfl=4, P=.6715) or preferred by SHEA members in general or on the topic of antimicrobial resistance (F=1.99, df=4, P=.0982).

CONCLUSIONS: This study provides an understanding of how physicians learn, prefer to learn, and implement best practices for optimal patient outcomes in decreasing the spread of antimicrobial resistance.

Brown TT, Proctor SE, Sinkowitz-Cochran RL, Smith TL, Jarvis WR,

Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2001 Oct;22(10):656-60

PMID: 11776356