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CME that impacts most physicians: a survey

Farhan Vakani (Department of Continuing Professional Education, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan)
Fatima Jafri (Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan)
Sara Rahman (Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA)
Wasim Jafri (Department of Continuing Professional Education, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan)

Asian Education and Development Studies

ISSN: 2046-3162

Article publication date: 25 May 2012




The purpose of this paper is to objectively assess the best type of continuing medical education (CME) activity that makes the most impact on the physicians’ behavior in changing their practices and to derive future needs for planning effective CME activities.


This paper presents a survey. A questionnaire was designed, pilot‐tested and administered in a CME session to all the health physicians of a private medical university in Sind province of Pakistan. The questionnaire incorporated seven core items that assessed the impact of different types of CME activities on the physicians. The respondents rated the impact of CME based on their competence, performance, patient care processes and management on a five‐point Likert scale. Respondents’ responses in terms of type, committed time, usefulness, sponsorships and settings were also analyzed.


A total of 194 health physicians completed the questionnaire (response rate=100 per cent); 56 per cent of the responses were from female physicians. A majority of the respondents in their replies ranked local large‐group lectures, symposiums and workshops higher than journal clubs, conferences and on‐line CMEs. More than half of the respondents rated the impact of CMEs on a five‐point Likert scale as good or very good. This was in relevance to increase in their competence, performance, patient care processes and change in management style.

Research limitations/implications

The data generated through the survey are subject to desirability bias and may over‐represent the responses. The other limitation was the single university setting.

Practical implications

The methodology can thus be adaptable by CME planners within the region to assess the impact of the current CME activities in improving physicians’ competence and professionalism, and in designing effective academic activities for the future.


There is no other study that demonstrates the impact of the types of CME on physicians in the Pakistani medical profession and hence this paper is of high interest.



Vakani, F., Jafri, F., Rahman, S. and Jafri, W. (2012), "CME that impacts most physicians: a survey", Asian Education and Development Studies, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 171-180.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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