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Physician Use of Online CME Up 25% in 2004; Pri-Med CME Insight Survey Cites Emerging eCME Role as Complement to Live Meetings
[June 29, 2004]

Physician Use of Online CME Up 25% in 2004; Pri-Med CME Insight Survey Cites Emerging eCME Role as Complement to Live Meetings

BOSTON --(Business Wire)-- June 29, 2004 -- While the number of continuing medical education credits earned online by primary care physicians grew 25% in 2004, eCME is the preferred learning channel for only one physician in ten, according to the second annual Pri-Med CME Insight Survey.

"By a wide margin, medical meetings remain the preferred source for continuing medical education among physicians," said Anne Goodrich, research director of the Pri-Med Institute. "While eCME today accounts for only 10% of all CME credits earned by primary care physicians, it is clearly an educational channel that is beginning to reach a broader audience," she said.

The 2004 Pri-Med CME Insight survey of primary care physicians throughout the US found that live educational forums remain the preferred source of CME by a margin of four-to-one, followed by enduring materials, professional journals and eCME respectively. Currently, the least popular learning method is hospital grand rounds.

Key criteria cited in choosing a medical meeting are relevance of clinical topics, caliber of speakers, convenience of schedule and time required to attend. Location of conferences is also a primary consideration. More than 70% of doctors surveyed said a key criterion for attending a meeting is whether it is being held less than 200 miles away, compared to 67% the year before. The proportion of physicians willing to travel to attend a national conference declined from 34% to 30% in 2004.

"We see accessibility and flexibility as increasingly important values for physicians in choosing CME channels," Goodrich said, "and these are core attributes of eCME. Because doctors continue to express a clear preference for live meetings, we believe that eCME will develop more as a complement to - and an expansion of - medical education forums. Medical conferences will begin to use eCME channels to supplement their clinical curricula and offer continuous educational opportunities."

The Pri-Med Institute is the research and accreditation affiliate of Pri-Med, the leading producer of continuing medical education for primary care physicians.

Information provided by Pri-Med. Pri-Med is the leading continuing medical education provider for primary care practitioners, psychiatrists and pharmacists in the United States. With a nationwide network of over 85 programs, Pri-Med has delivered world class continuing medical education over the last ten years to more than 125,000 clinicians locally.

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