The University of Colorado School of Medicine (SOM) is part of the only academic health science center in the State of Colorado and a large portion of the Rocky Mountain region. As a SOM, we have 2,400 full-time faculty and 2,800 clinical faculty in a state of over four million people. We envision that continuing medical education (CME) is a strategic asset of the SOM and its core clinical facilities, of its full-time and volunteer faculty, and of physicians and other health care professionals throughout the region and the United States.
Our fundamental purpose is to improve knowledge, competence, performance and health outcomes using lifelong learning integrating undergraduate, graduate and continuing medical education. We will accomplish this through continuing medical education that:
- Is linked to practice and focused on health care quality gaps
- Supports physicians’ maintenance of certification and maintenance of licensure
- Fosters collaboration within and among health professionals and their institutions to address quality improvement
- Addresses interdisciplinary team practice
- Is independent of commercial interests
Our content will be derived from needs assessments that underlie knowledge gaps and practice gaps of our audience. Practice gaps will be derived, whenever possible, by comparing current practices to best practices as defined by national or regional organizations. We will identify gaps in physician knowledge, competence, performance and outcomes through collaboration with other stakeholders, so that our CME content will be integrated into the process for improving professional practice. Specific content areas include basic science pertinent to clinical practice, diagnoses, treatment and prevention of disease, and health care promotion and maintenance. Throughout the core content we will include cross-cutting areas of medical ethics, medical economics, and physician attributes and competencies as described by the American Board of Medical Specialties. To the maximum possible extent, we will develop CME activities that support patient-centered, evidence-based and team-based care and that utilize new educational technologies.
Our primary audience is broad and consists of physicians from our full-time and volunteer faculty, physicians in the State of Colorado and the surrounding Rocky Mountain region, and physicians from across the United States. Medical care increasingly is carried out by teams, and we will interact collaboratively with advanced practice nurses, physician assistants, nurses, pharmacists, dentists, public health officials, and other professionals and their institutions to develop inter-disciplinary, team-based education and training activities for health professionals.
Types of Activities
We are committed to an enhanced scope of effective CME activities. In addition to regularly scheduled series and courses conducted by medical school departments and centers, we are expanding programs in performance improvement and professional development to improve practice. We are also developing CME activities in learning through committee work. We will utilize existing and develop new tools to measure post-activity changes in physician behavior and ultimately patient safety and quality. As a medical school, we also value scholarly activity within the discipline of CME and will endeavor to report research findings.
We expect different results for different groups within our target audience. Overall, we expect to improve health care physicians’ knowledge and their competence, performance or patient health outcomes.
We will conduct an assessment of CME program effectiveness by regular, systematic analysis of compliance with the 22 criteria established by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education. Our goal is CME that makes a difference in patient care. We will pursue continued improvement of CME effectiveness through ongoing assessment and change.
Ronald S. Gibbs, MD
Associate Dean, Continuing Medical Education
Richard D. Krugman, MD
Dean, School of Medicine