Professional Development

20 - Effective CME
So, how does this translate to CME? Well, logically, CME activities that are more interactive, hands-on, case-based or problem solving are more conducive to learning and likely to be more effective in leading to changes in physician behavior. Furthermore, CME that gives physicians information that they can use immediately in their practice is also very effective.Interestingly, though, lectures remain the preferred CME activity format, even though it has been shown to be among the least effective. The reasons for this vary and can be because these courses do give them something they want and need, such as contact with peers, but, there is usually particular interest in lectures that have a question and answer component --an interactive element-- which increases the effectiveness and learning.The Internet and other new technologies have obviously enabled the creation of new and more interactive activities, and have forced organizations to rethink what types of activities are designated for credit. Several pilot projects are underway to evaluate if physicians can earn credit from typical day-to-day activities, such as looking up information on the Internet or on a handheld device, or using specific software to apply guidelines and treat a disease. Again, these types of interactive activities that allow them to use or apply what they have learned immediately in their practice are the most beneficial.