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Patient Educ Couns. 2010 Aug;80(2):248-52. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2009.11.015. Epub 2010 Jan 6.

Can interactive skills-based seminars with standardized patients enhance clinicians' prevention skills? Measuring the impact of a CME program.

Author information

1
New York University School of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine, New York, NY 10016, USA. sondra.zabar@nyumc.org

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Communication skills are crucial for high-risk behavior screening and counseling. Practicing physicians have limited opportunities to improve these skills. This paper assesses the impact of a continuing medical education (CME) program for Student Health Center clinicians that targeted communication skills, screening practices and patient satisfaction.

METHODS:

Program evaluation included pre- and post-objective structured clinical examinations (OSCE's), chart review, and provider and patient satisfaction surveys. Data were analyzed using paired t-tests and ranked sum tests.

RESULTS:

OSCE scores (n=15) revealed significant improvements in communication skills overall (p=0.004) and within specific domains (data gathering: p=0.003; rapport building: p=0.01; patient education: p=0.02), but no change in case-specific knowledge (p=0.1). Participants (n=14) reported high satisfaction with program methods (mean=4.6/5) and content (mean=4.7/5), 70% planning to alter their clinical practice. Chart audits (pre=96, post=103) showed increased screening for smoking (RR 1.65, p=0.03), depressed mood (RR 1.40, p=0.04), anhedonia (RR 1.47, p=0.01), sexual activity (RR 1.73, p=0.002) and drinking (RR 1.77, p=0.04). Sampling of satisfaction among participants' patients (pre n=689, post n=383) detected no increase in already high baseline satisfaction.

CONCLUSION:

This curriculum improved clinicians' relevant skills and screening behavior.

PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS:

Skills-oriented CME can improve clinicians' communication skills and screening and counseling practices.

PMID:
20053518
DOI:
10.1016/j.pec.2009.11.015
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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