Internet point of care learning at a community hospital

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Introduction:Internet point of care (PoC) learning is a relatively new method for obtaining continuing medical education credits. Few data are available to describe physician utilization of this CME activity.Methods:We describe the Internet point of care system we developed at a medium-sized community hospital and report on its first year of utilization. We reviewed all completed Internet PoC report forms for 1 year to determine what percentage of our medical staff participated. Using a Likert-type scale, physicians were asked to rate the effectiveness of this method as a means for obtaining CME credit and for improving patient care.Results:From a medical staff of 355, 7 physicians (2%) completed an Internet PoC form in the first year of use. The number of completed forms ranged from 1 to 18 for each individual who used the system. On a 5-point Likert scale, physicians rated this method as follows: good answer found to question = 4.4, knowledge base was improved = 4.0, patient benefited from the information = 4.0, and good way to learn new information = 4.2.Discussion:A small number of physicians utilized this method for obtaining CME credit, but some individuals really embraced it. Those who used it liked it as a way to obtain CME and many felt strongly that it improved patient care. Other hospitals are encouraged to develop an Internet PoC reporting system for their medical staff.

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