Friday, April 13, 2018

UMHS offers CME through AccessMedicine

AccessMedicine provides built-in American Medical Association Continuing Medical Education (CME) opportunities!

With our UMHS institutional site license UMHS faculty and students can obtain CME credits simply by browsing and reading content on AccessMedicine. Users can obtain up to 20 category 1 AMA credits through AccessMedicine. Credits are obtained when users read a CME eligible chapter from one of the many full text medical reference books included on AM, such as Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. The user can choose to tag that material for CME, answer some basic follow-up questions, and then they will earn their CME certificate.

Users can also find CME eligible content within the new Clinical Prep feature on AccessMedicine.


Users also have the ability to set-up alerts to notify them when any eligible CME is about to expire so that they can claim that credit. An overview of what AccessMedicine resources are available for CME along with more details about this feature can be found at: About CME. To learn more watch this brief tutorial:



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Thursday, April 17, 2014

The MedEd Revolution: AMA Steps Up Focus on Information Literacy


Medical education, in it's current modern form (since the Flexner Report of 1910) seems ripe for change if the response rate to a recent AMA program initiative is any indication.  The American Medical Association recently developed a proposal outlining a number of  key trans-formative changes they would like to see in the way physicians are educated. The response from US medical schools was in their words "overwhelming". 
"The reason the AMA emphasizes “accelerating” change is that incremental changes aren’t enough to ensure that future doctors get the training they need in a world in which rapid business, population and technological changes have made being a doctor a much more dynamic profession. These have to be systemic changes, as bold and far-reaching in our time as they were in the wake of the Flexner report."
Click to read the full report (posted March 18, 2013): Medical schools signal readiness for revolution 

In my role as Library Director at UMHS, a top tear Caribbean medical school, I habitually stress to our faculty and students the importance of that fundamental element for success as an 'evidence-based' medical practitioner, the ability to find the current best evidence. To determine the best diagnosis and course of treatment for the best clinical outcomes, medical students must learn how to locate the best, most up-to-date, credible medical evidence to support their case. This requires a fairly sophisticated level of skill in information searching, along with knowledge of the credible medical literature, the databases that contain it, as well as an understanding of the structure and functioning of the online environment.

I commend the AMA for recognizing the fact that mature information seeking behavior needs to be acquired by medical students, and for stepping up the focus on the importance of acquiring the concepts involved. Now the onus is on medical schools to include throughout their curriculum, embedded or otherwise, adequate instruction and ongoing reinforcement of information searching skills.  

" The proposals reflect a changing health care delivery system transformed by technology so that the skill of finding and applying information is as important — or more so — than memorizing it."  
You may be thinking, "Isn't Generation Y completely computer savvy already?" In fact the answer is no, for the most part they aren't. I can say this confidently because of another report finding, also recently released, called the JISC Digital Information Seeker Report. This report demonstrates what my gut has told me all along, that the crucial factor in student's information seeking behavior is convenience! What does this lead to? The report's initial results indicate that
"...as users progress through the educational stages, the digital literacies they employ do not necessarily become more sophisticated."  "...findings indicate the students use smart phones and laptop computers to access Wikipedia, Google, teachers or professors, friends and peers to get information for their academic studies."
Click to read the full report (posted March 20, 2013): JISC Digital Information Seeker Report 

Google is great for KISS ('keep it simple searching') and 'needle-in-a-haystack' type searches, however when it comes to a medical diagnosis the best, most accurate information is required! An interesting  BMJ research article by Hangwi Tang and Jennifer Hwee Kwoon Ng, called "Googling for a diagnosis - use of Google as a diagnostic aid: internet based study.",  found that Google yielded a correct diagnosis 58% of the time (based on one year's worth of diagnostic case records published in the New England Journal of Medicine). Not an accuracy rate that would inspire patient confidence!

If the anticipated MedEd revolution unfolds as the AMA is indicating, it is my hope that medical schools will recognize the expertise already in their midst and turn to their 'Information Professionals" ~ the medical librarians! I will rest my case with the age-old words of wisdom penned by Samuel Johnson...
“Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find the information.”

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Thursday, June 02, 2011

United States Experiencing a Growing Shortage of Physicians

Dr. Cecil B. Wilson, AMA President, speaking recently to the Society of Hospital Medicine:
"Right now, the AMA estimates that there will be a shortage of at least 125,000 physicians by 2025. The problem is not just the number of the physicians but who they are and where they practice. Some of the greatest physician shortages are in rural areas and in minority communities. Recruiting minority physicians has been a challenge, he said, in part because of the high cost of medical school, but also because there are few minority role models in the medical community."
Click on the post title for the news report by Mary Ellen Schneider on Elevier Global Medical News.

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Defining Roles: Future Directions for Physicians and Nurses

The New York Times weighs in on the recent Institute of Medicine's landmark report, “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health.” [ Doctor and Patient: Nurses’ Role in the Future of Health Care, Pauline Chen, M.D., November 18, 2010. Click title for NYT article.]
"In all the discussions about adjusting the number of medical schools and training slots, rearranging physician payment schedules and reorganizing practice models, one group of providers has been conspicuously missing. The nurses."
"The expert panel is scheduled to convene again at the end of this month, this time to discuss implementing their recommendations. They will have their work cut out for them. Critics like the American Medical Association ...warns that “with a shortage of both nurses and physicians, increasing the responsibility of nurses is not the answer to the physician shortage.” "
The Times article notes...
“When the ship seems to be going down, you’ve got to get all hands on deck.”

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