Continuing Medical Education

 

Continuing medical education (CME) comprises of educational activities that actively sustain/enhance the practitioner skills, knowledge, and performance to improve healthcare and patient outcomes. In addition to enhancing practice competence, CME advances practitioners as educators and researchers.

 

Why CME is Imperative?

 

Historically, physicians are endowed with professional autonomy by the society; the belief that physicians are adequately competent on entry into practice and that they will sustain competence as long as they practise is rather dogmatic. Although, it cannot be ruled out that scenario in the past may have conformed to this notion, today’s context makes it obsolete. In the past, physicians would have kept pace with one’s area of medical expertise because medical advancement was not as exponential as it is seen today. Self-assessment and self-learning do not represent viable modes of maintaining competence anymore.

 

In the present context, medical practice has to be predicated on “active learning”; it is essential for CME recipients to choose more formal methods to maintaining competence. Regular relicensure methods are rather centralized and do not specifically address individual practices; therefore, there is an impending need for innovative strategies. Furthermore, an evidence-based correlation has been drawn between improved patient outcomes and modified physician practice behaviours that are based on well conducted needs assessments.