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Arch Iran Med. 2012 Apr;15(4):223-7. doi: 012154/AIM.0010.

Which information resources are used by general practitioners for updating knowledge regarding diabetes?

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  • 1Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, #12 East Nosrat Ave., Tehran, Iran.



Little is known about the degree of utilization of information resources on diabetes by general practitioners (GPs) and its impact on their clinical behavior in developing countries. Such information is vital if GPs' diabetes knowledge is to be improved.


This cross-sectional study recruited 319 GPs in the summer of 2008. Questions were about the updates on diabetes knowledge in the previous two years, utilization of information resources (domestic and foreign journals, congresses, the Internet, reference books, mass media, and peers), attitude toward the importance of each resource, and impact of each resource on clinical behavior.


A total of 62% of GPs had used information resources for improving their knowledge on diabetes in the previous two years. Domestic journals accounted for the highest utilization (30%) and the highest importance score (83 points from 100); with the importance score not being affected by sex, years elapsed after graduation, and numbers of diabetic visits. Clinical behavior was not influenced by the information resources listed; whereas knowledge upgrade, irrespective of the sources utilized, had a significantly positive correlation with clinical behavior.


Domestic journals constituted the main information resource utilized by the GPs; this resource, however, in tandem with the other information resources on diabetes exerted no significant impact on the GPs' clinical behavior. In contrast to the developed countries, clinical guidelines do not have any place as a source of information and or practice. Indubitably, the improvement of diabetes knowledge transfer requires serious interventions to improve information resources as well as the structure of scientific gatherings and collaborations.

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