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May 24, 2013
The mission of The Evolution of Anticoagulation Management (TEAM) initiative is to reduce stroke, pulmonary embolism, and other complications associated with thrombus formation through effective continuing education that results in optimal anticoagulation management. As part of this national initiative, the Physicians’ Institute’s is supporting and managing up to 20 CME grants targeting primary care physicians and their teams.
Change is never-ending in the CME/CPD* world. This is how it should be, because the world of continuing education was developed to deal with the dynamics of learning. There is always new stuff to know and new conditions in which to use the knowledge.
On my drives to and from work, I listen to a lot of XM radio. A song that has been getting a lot of airplay recently is “Reboot the Mission” by the Wallflowers. The chorus goes, “Eyes on the prize/reboot the mission/I lost my sight/but not the vision.” I think that this chorus is worth some consideration by those of us in the CPD world. Does it apply to us? Have we lost our sight? Have we lost the mission? Does the mission need rebooting?
What is our mission in CPD? There are many ways to slice, dice, and define this term, but most of the CPD professionals I talk to identify “improving patient care” as the fundamental mission that directs (or should, anyhow) what we do. However, very rarely do I see some sort of needs assessment or gap assessment instrument ask specifically, “What does the patient need from this?” We frequently focus on proxies of change that we believe will result in better patient care such as provider intent to change, but we aren’t really explicit about what the patient wants or needs.
As we enter the arrival of a new catch-phrase for improved patient care, “patient-centered” this and that, let’s make sure that we add the Voice of the Patient to our project development process. As we reboot our mission for the nth time, let’s make sure that we have not lost the vision that we do what we do for improved patient care.
*Henceforth, I will use “CPD” (continuing professional development) to refer to CME, CE, and all other flavors and brands of continuing education designed for health care professionals of whatever stripe.