The Impact of CME on Physician Performance and Patient Health Outcomes: An Updated Synthesis of Systematic Reviews

Ronald M. Cervero, Julie K. Gaines

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

102 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: Since 1977, many systematic reviews have asked 2 fundamental questions: (1) Does CME improve physician performance and patient health outcomes? and (2) What are the mechanisms of action that lead to positive changes in these outcomes? The article's purpose is to synthesize the systematic review literature about CME effectiveness published since 2003. Methods: We identified 8 systematic reviews of CME effectiveness published since 2003 in which primary research studies in CME were reviewed and physicians' performance and/or patient health outcomes were included as outcome measures. Results: Five systematic reviews addressed the question of "Is CME Effective?" using primary studies employing randomized controlled trials (RCTs) or experimental design methods and concluded: (1) CME does improve physician performance and patient health outcomes, and (2) CME has a more reliably positive impact on physician performance than on patient health outcomes. The 8 systematic reviews support previous research showing CME activities that are more interactive, use more methods, involve multiple exposures, are longer, and are focused on outcomes that are considered important by physicians lead to more positive outcomes. Discussion: Future research on CME effectiveness must take account of the wider social, political, and organizational factors that play a role in physician performance and patient health outcomes. We now have 39 systematic reviews that present an evidence-based approach to designing CME that is more likely to improve physician performance and patient health outcomes. These insights from the scientific study of CME effectiveness should be incorporated in ongoing efforts to reform systems of CME and health care delivery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)131-138
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions
Volume35
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

Fingerprint

physician
Physicians
Health
health
performance
Physician's Role
Politics
Research
Research Design
Randomized Controlled Trials
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)
Delivery of Health Care
health care
reform
evidence

Keywords

  • Evaluation-educational intervention
  • Performance Improvement CE
  • Problem-based/case-based learning
  • Program planning/curriculum development
  • Review-Cochrane/meta-analysis
  • Strategic issues in CME/CPD

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

Cite this

@article{dffdc4451f7f4b1895ce793f652cc85b,
title = "The Impact of CME on Physician Performance and Patient Health Outcomes: An Updated Synthesis of Systematic Reviews",
abstract = "Introduction: Since 1977, many systematic reviews have asked 2 fundamental questions: (1) Does CME improve physician performance and patient health outcomes? and (2) What are the mechanisms of action that lead to positive changes in these outcomes? The article's purpose is to synthesize the systematic review literature about CME effectiveness published since 2003. Methods: We identified 8 systematic reviews of CME effectiveness published since 2003 in which primary research studies in CME were reviewed and physicians' performance and/or patient health outcomes were included as outcome measures. Results: Five systematic reviews addressed the question of {"}Is CME Effective?{"} using primary studies employing randomized controlled trials (RCTs) or experimental design methods and concluded: (1) CME does improve physician performance and patient health outcomes, and (2) CME has a more reliably positive impact on physician performance than on patient health outcomes. The 8 systematic reviews support previous research showing CME activities that are more interactive, use more methods, involve multiple exposures, are longer, and are focused on outcomes that are considered important by physicians lead to more positive outcomes. Discussion: Future research on CME effectiveness must take account of the wider social, political, and organizational factors that play a role in physician performance and patient health outcomes. We now have 39 systematic reviews that present an evidence-based approach to designing CME that is more likely to improve physician performance and patient health outcomes. These insights from the scientific study of CME effectiveness should be incorporated in ongoing efforts to reform systems of CME and health care delivery.",
keywords = "Evaluation-educational intervention, Performance Improvement CE, Problem-based/case-based learning, Program planning/curriculum development, Review-Cochrane/meta-analysis, Strategic issues in CME/CPD",
author = "Cervero, {Ronald M.} and Gaines, {Julie K.}",
year = "2015",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1002/chp.21290",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "35",
pages = "131--138",
journal = "Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions",
issn = "0894-1912",
publisher = "John Wiley and Sons Inc.",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Impact of CME on Physician Performance and Patient Health Outcomes

T2 - An Updated Synthesis of Systematic Reviews

AU - Cervero, Ronald M.

AU - Gaines, Julie K.

PY - 2015/3/1

Y1 - 2015/3/1

N2 - Introduction: Since 1977, many systematic reviews have asked 2 fundamental questions: (1) Does CME improve physician performance and patient health outcomes? and (2) What are the mechanisms of action that lead to positive changes in these outcomes? The article's purpose is to synthesize the systematic review literature about CME effectiveness published since 2003. Methods: We identified 8 systematic reviews of CME effectiveness published since 2003 in which primary research studies in CME were reviewed and physicians' performance and/or patient health outcomes were included as outcome measures. Results: Five systematic reviews addressed the question of "Is CME Effective?" using primary studies employing randomized controlled trials (RCTs) or experimental design methods and concluded: (1) CME does improve physician performance and patient health outcomes, and (2) CME has a more reliably positive impact on physician performance than on patient health outcomes. The 8 systematic reviews support previous research showing CME activities that are more interactive, use more methods, involve multiple exposures, are longer, and are focused on outcomes that are considered important by physicians lead to more positive outcomes. Discussion: Future research on CME effectiveness must take account of the wider social, political, and organizational factors that play a role in physician performance and patient health outcomes. We now have 39 systematic reviews that present an evidence-based approach to designing CME that is more likely to improve physician performance and patient health outcomes. These insights from the scientific study of CME effectiveness should be incorporated in ongoing efforts to reform systems of CME and health care delivery.

AB - Introduction: Since 1977, many systematic reviews have asked 2 fundamental questions: (1) Does CME improve physician performance and patient health outcomes? and (2) What are the mechanisms of action that lead to positive changes in these outcomes? The article's purpose is to synthesize the systematic review literature about CME effectiveness published since 2003. Methods: We identified 8 systematic reviews of CME effectiveness published since 2003 in which primary research studies in CME were reviewed and physicians' performance and/or patient health outcomes were included as outcome measures. Results: Five systematic reviews addressed the question of "Is CME Effective?" using primary studies employing randomized controlled trials (RCTs) or experimental design methods and concluded: (1) CME does improve physician performance and patient health outcomes, and (2) CME has a more reliably positive impact on physician performance than on patient health outcomes. The 8 systematic reviews support previous research showing CME activities that are more interactive, use more methods, involve multiple exposures, are longer, and are focused on outcomes that are considered important by physicians lead to more positive outcomes. Discussion: Future research on CME effectiveness must take account of the wider social, political, and organizational factors that play a role in physician performance and patient health outcomes. We now have 39 systematic reviews that present an evidence-based approach to designing CME that is more likely to improve physician performance and patient health outcomes. These insights from the scientific study of CME effectiveness should be incorporated in ongoing efforts to reform systems of CME and health care delivery.

KW - Evaluation-educational intervention

KW - Performance Improvement CE

KW - Problem-based/case-based learning

KW - Program planning/curriculum development

KW - Review-Cochrane/meta-analysis

KW - Strategic issues in CME/CPD

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84932187175&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84932187175&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1002/chp.21290

DO - 10.1002/chp.21290

M3 - Article

C2 - 26115113

AN - SCOPUS:84932187175

VL - 35

SP - 131

EP - 138

JO - Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions

JF - Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions

SN - 0894-1912

IS - 2

ER -