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CLINICAL INVESTIGATION
Year : 2008  |  Volume : 52  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 818 Table of Contents     

Attitude Amongst Resident Doctors in The Specialty of Anaesthesiology Towards Conferences and Workshops


1 Attending Consultant Anesthesiology, Max Superspeciality hospital, Saket, New Delhi, India
2 Senior resident, Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi-110001, India
3 Senior resident, Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
4 Associate Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Maulana Azad Medical College and associated Lok Nayak Hospital, New Delhi-110002, India
5 Senior resident, Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Maulana Azad Medical College and associated Lok Nayak Hospital, New Delhi-110002, India
6 Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Maulana Azad Medical College and associated Lok Nayak Hospital, New Delhi-110002, India

Date of Acceptance04-Nov-2008
Date of Web Publication19-Mar-2010

Correspondence Address:
Nishkarsh Gupta
437, Pocket A, Sarita Vihar, New Delhi- 110076
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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The foundations of quality patient care are laid during training, but awareness of recent developments in medical knowledge is prerequisite to maintain a high level of quality care. Conferences and workshops are held as a part of continuing medical education (CME) under various banners in all specialties worldwide.
This audit was carried out among the residents (JR and SR) working in various hospitals in Northern India. A questionnaire (14 questions) was designed to assess the attitude of resident doctors in the specialty of anaesthesiology towards conferences and workshops. Two hundred and fifty residents (110 senior and 150 junior residents) partici­pated in the audit and the information thus collected was analyzed.
The audit revealed that all the residents were attending CME programmes whenever possible and major rea­sons cited for attending were to update knowledge (52% SRs and 63% PGs), make a presentation, to meet friends and socialize. The duration of workshop found to be most optimum was 2-3 days (70% residents). Almost all the residents (98% SRs and 96% PGs) were in favor of making a presentation during a conference in order to increase their confidence level, acquire knowledge and improve the resume. The majority preferred an oral presentation (87% SRs and 84% PGs) to a poster presentation as it enhanced their confidence and it was easier to prepare and carry out the material.
The audit revealed that most of the residents suggested the making of some form of presentation compulsory during conferences every year (42% SRs and 29% PGs), with financial aid (20% SRs and 25% PGs) and special leaves (25% SRs and 28% PGs) to encourage active participation among the residents.

Keywords: Conferences, Workshops, Resident doctors, Attitude


How to cite this article:
Gupta N, Gupta A, Garg R, Bhalotra A, Kohli A, Bhadoria P. Attitude Amongst Resident Doctors in The Specialty of Anaesthesiology Towards Conferences and Workshops. Indian J Anaesth 2008;52:818

How to cite this URL:
Gupta N, Gupta A, Garg R, Bhalotra A, Kohli A, Bhadoria P. Attitude Amongst Resident Doctors in The Specialty of Anaesthesiology Towards Conferences and Workshops. Indian J Anaesth [serial online] 2008 [cited 2019 Dec 11];52:818. Available from: http://www.ijaweb.org/text.asp?2008/52/6/818/60694


   Introduction Top


A clinical audit is defined as a quality improve­ment process that seeks to improve patient care and outcomes through systemic review of care against ex­plicit criteria and the implementation of change.

The foundations of quality patient care begin dur­ing training, but with rapid developments in medical knowledge, awareness of latest advances is required to maintain optimum standards. [1],[2] Conferences and workshops are held round the year as a part of con­tinuing medical education (CME) to get acquainted with the latest advances in the subject. There is an increas­ing trend and enthusiasm to register, attend and partici­pate in such scientific activities amongst the resident doctors. This prompted us to conduct an audit by means of a questionnaire, designed to assess the attitude amongst resident doctors in the specialty of anaesthesiology towards conferences and workshops. This audit was carried out among the residents work­ing in various hospitals in Northern India.


   Methods Top


A detailed questionnaire was sent to over 100 residents in anaesthesia through email, 50 were sent by post and 150 were interviewed personally in northern part of India. Both the government institutional and pri­vate hospitals were included. The questionnaire (en­closed in annexure) was designed to assess the attitude among resident doctors towards conferences and workshops and to suggest implementation of changes with the objective of improving their participation for updating professional knowledge and skills. A database was created and analyzed using Microsoft Excel.


   Results Top


Out of 300 residents, two hundred and sixty (86.7%) responded. There were 150 junior residents (postgraduates) and 110 senior residents (who had obtained diploma or degree in Anaesthesia) who par­ticipated. The age varied from 24- 30 years.

Most residents (52% SRs and 63% PGs) desired to attend the conferences/ workshops to update the knowledge, learn new skills and expertise the use of new equipment in the field. Of the other options, to get relieved from routine OT duty (8% SRs and 5 % PGs) was the least favoured option.

A majority of residents (87% SRs and 98% PGs) felt that workshops were more beneficial than the con­ferences [Figure 1]. 70% of the residents felt that the op­timum duration should be 2-3 days. None of them felt that duration should be greater than 5 days [Figure 2].

All the respondents had taken part in some edu­cational activity [Figure 3]:a,b. Almost all residents (98% SRs and 96% PGs) felt that they were benefited by making a presentation at a conference. The maximum benefit of making a presentation seemed to be a gain in confidence levels. Acquisition of knowledge was the next followed by an improvement of resume, recogni­tion among colleagues and the ability to obtain leave from routine duties. The average number of presenta­tions made by each resident was 1.8/ year for SR's and 1.6/year for PG's.

The advantages gained by attending a conference/ workshop were improvement in daily clinical work (60% SRs and 70% PGs), preparation for examina­tion (15% SRs and 78% PGs) and guidance of junior colleagues (77% SRs and 54% PGs) [Figure 4].

Oral presentations were preferred over poster presentations by the majority i.e.87% SRs and 84% PGs. The main reason was again an increase in confi­dence level. This was followed by other reasons in or­der of preference i.e. were easier to prepare, were economical, and required limited time and gained more recognition among colleagues. The main advantages cited for poster sessions included presentation of data in an attractive manner, easier preparation, less element of stage fear etc.

Our audit revealed that to encourage active par­ticipation in such activities amongst resident doctors, special leave should be granted (25% SRs and 28% PGs), financial aid (20% SRs and 25% PGs) and prizes should be offered (10%SRs and 20% PGs) and a mini­mum number of presentations should be made com­pulsory (42% SRs and 29% PGs) prior to completion of residency.


   Discussion Top


Continuing medical education (CME) refers to a specific form of continuing education that helps those, in the medical field to maintain competence and keep updated about any new and developing advances in the specialty. This may take the form of live events, written publications or online programmes via audio, video or other electronic media. The content for these programmes is developed and delivered by faculty who are experts in their individual clinical areas. CME is an essential element of any modern health system because it assists doctors to make independent decisions, im­prove quality of patient care and may allow a more efficient use of health care resources.

Recognition of the disparity in doctors skills and the need to maintain common core standards have lead to "recertification" movements all over the world. [1] These may offer CME programmes for maintenance of com­petence by participation in formal educational activi­ties. Most postgraduate CME programmes however simply require a set number of hours of attendance (about 50 hours at recognized CME courses).

Some forms of CME are recognized as being more effective than others in changing health care prac­tice. In Canada, the Maintenance of Competence Programme (MOCOMP) System awards credits on the basis of the educational quality of the programme. 1 Traditional didactic session is rated at 1 credit /hour while interactive workshops receive 2 credits/ hour.

The most common reasons which have been sited in the literature for attending CME events include - keeping up to date, staying in touch with other fields of medicine, interacting with experts and colleagues to gain reassurance about their own standards and learning of recent advances. [2] In UK, a postal questionnaire to 459 names suggested reasons for attending CME as-to keep up-to-date with clinical duties and teaching (94%& 81%), for personal enjoyment (75%), requirement of the college (58%) and encouragement for employer (35%)[3] . This study also, the updating of knowledge was sited as an important reason for attending conferences/workshops.

To be effective a CME must be practical, effec­tive, efficient, directly related to the clinician's daily life and use actual cases and demonstrate useful methods for solving problems. Systemic reviews of educational outcomes and theory offer some hints on how CME could be better organized. By most standards, confer­ences, printed educational materials and didactic lectures have only weak effects[4],[5],[6]. Well constructed inter­active sessions however can lead to changes in physi­cian practice. [4],[5]Meetings that provide an opportunity for small group interactions and learning centered on workplace practice seem to be effective. [7] Workshops were found to be more beneficial than conferences in this audit. This is similar to previous studies that show that unlike didactic sessions which seldom change phy­sician performance, interactive CME sessions that en­hance participant activity and provide an opportunity to practice skills are preferred. [4]

Almost all the residents had attended some form of CME and were in favor of making a presentation during a conference in order to increase their confidence level, acquire knowledge and improve their resume.

Oral presentations give the presenter a good op­portunity to practice unaided speaking, increase the presenter's confidence and give good listening prac­tice to the others. It is assessed on the basis of pre­sentation skills in addition to the content. Whereas in a poster because of restricted space text and graphics are combined to condense the ideas in minimum space possible. It may be evaluated on entire visual effective­ness, quality of information, relevance, originality and balance of text, graphics and illustrations. This audit revealed that oral presentations were preferred over poster presentations (87% SRs and 84% PGs) because they increased confidence, were easier to prepare, were economical, required limited time for preparation and more recognition was received among colleagues.

CME must become a more visible, integrated and well planned activity for which both productive time and adequate funds must be provided. Barriers to at­tending local and external CME programmes which have been cited include routine clinical and personal commitments, difficulty in getting time off, distance to meeting and lack of funding. These may be some of the reasons why most participants in our audit seemed to agree that the duration of a CME programme should be limited to 2-3 days. This audit also revealed that residents can be encouraged to participate by provid­ing them with special leaves, financial aid, prizes and making a minimum number of presentations compul­sory for every resident doctor.

To improve the participation of resident doctors in our country in local and national CME programmes it is recommended to organize workshops (with dura­tion limited to 3 days) more frequently and measures may be taken to encourage participation as above.

It is a challenge to maintain professional compe­tency in an environment of rapid changes and fast de­velopment, information overload and increasing public expectations. Academic institutions and medical orga­nizations need to improve their educational competence and show a stronger commitment to research. It is important to find methods to improve doctor's capa­bilities to define their learning needs and then to deal with these needs- by asking the right questions and find­ing the right answers.

This type of an audit may be a step forward to define the needs of an effective CME teaching for continous quality improvement.

Appendix 1:

Attitude of the Resident Doctors towards Conferences and Workshops

In Anaesthesia Specialty: An Audit

Tick () the correct option or give grade/number as mentioned:

1. What is your current designation?

  1. PG I, II, III
  2. SR I, II, III


2. Institution of training

3. Age/Gender

4. Why do you intend to attend conferences/ work shops? Grade (1-5)

  1. To update knowledge.
  2. To acquire new skills.
  3. To make a presentation.
  4. To get relieved from routine OT duty.
  5. To meet friends and socialize


5. Which do you think is more beneficial?

  1. Conference
  2. Workshop


6. What do you think is the optimum duration for a confer­ence/ workshop?

  1. 1 day
  2. 2-3 days
  3. 3-5 days
  4. > 5 days


7. How many conferences/workshops have you attended till date? Mention Number (1, 2, 3...)

  1. Institution based
  2. State level
  3. National level
  4. International level
  5. None


8. Do you think you are benefited by making a presenta­tion in a conference/workshop? Yes/No

9. The benefits of making a presentation include: Grade (1-5)

  1. Increase in confidence level
  2. Acquisition of knowledge
  3. Improvement of resume
  4. Recognition among colleagues
  5. Obtaining leave to attend the conference


10.How many presentations have you made till date? Mention Number (1, 2, 3...)

  1. Oral
  2. Poster
  3. None


11. After attending conferences/workshops did you learn anything that helped you ?

  1. In daily clinical work
  2. For exam preparation
  3. To persuade junior colleagues


12. What kind of presentation do you prefer?

  1. Oral presentation
  2. Poster presentation


13. If oral, because it is - Grade (1-4)

  1. Economical& Easy to carry around the material
  2. You gain more confidence
  3. Can be prepared more easily
  4. Recognition among colleagues e) Any other


14. If poster, because it is -Grade (1-4)

  1. Easier to present
  2. Easier to prepare
  3. Less element of stage fright
  4. Can present data in attractive manner
  5. Any other


15. What should be done to encourage active partici

pation among residents? Grade (1-5)

  1. Grant special leave
  2. Financial aid for preparation
  3. Give more prizes
  4. Make a minimum number of presentations compulsory every year.


 
   References Top

1.Bashook P G, Parboosingh J. Recertification and main­tenance of competence. BMJ 1998; 316: 545-8.  Back to cited text no. 1      
2.Harrison C, Hogg W. Why do doctors attend traditional CME events if they don't change what they do in their surgeries? Evaluation of doctor's reasons for attending traditional CME program. Med Educ 2003; 37:884-8.  Back to cited text no. 2  [PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]  
3.Chambers W A, Ferguson K, Prescott G J. Continuing medical education by anesthetists in Scotland:activi­ties, motivation and barriers. Anaesthesia 2000; 55: 1192-­1212.  Back to cited text no. 3      
4.Davis D. Impact of formal CME: do conferences, work­shops, rounds and other traditional continuing educa­tional activities change physician behavior or health care outcomes? JAMA, 1999; 289:867-74.  Back to cited text no. 4      
5.Thomas O'Brien M, Freemantle N, Oxman A, et al. Con­tinuing education meetings and workshops:effect on professional practice and health care outcomes. Cochrane Database Sys Rev 2001; 2: CD003030. Review.  Back to cited text no. 5      
6.Freemantle N, Harvey E, Wolf F, et al. Printed educa­tional materials: effects on professional practice and health care outcomes. Cochrane Database Sys Rev 2003; 3: CD000259. Review.  Back to cited text no. 6      
7.Holm A. Quality issues in continuing medical educa­tion. BMJ 1998; 316: 621-4.  Back to cited text no. 7      


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4]



 

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