The Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions annual conference is going on right now in San Francisco. It is about halfway done now, and this post is a series of my thoughts so far based on discussions I have had, or comments people have made in workshops or plenary presentations, that have impacted me as a part of my personal learning network.
1. The far-reaching, ultimate goal of continuing education is really about improving and optimizing patient care, specifically at a population/community health level.
2. Quality improvement and patient safety are not fads; they are an integral part of the practice of health education, and linking education to these areas is crucial to achieving #1 above.
3. Research about education practices is critical to advance the field.
4. There is a broad scope of activities beyond “live activities” for education of health professionals [I especially like Performance Improvement CME and Point of Care Learning CME as examples, and we need to be doing more of these].
5. Emerging technology is becoming more relevant every day in continuing education, and we need to embrace it rather than shy away from it.
6. We need a new paradigm for health care education that needs to be learner-centric, ultimately to achieve #1 above, and communication skills will be a critical component of that education.
7. Engaging all members of the health care team (from physicians to pharmacists, from nurses to social workers, just to name a few) is critical to the success of optimal patient care and #1 above. This includes interprofessional education, and also interprofessional practice.
So what do you think? What are some other take-home points from the conference so far? Please let me know by coming to the breakout session I am privileged to host with Dr. Jennifer Gunter on February 1, 2013, at 3:15 pm, on “Perspectives in Learning Through Social Media”.