Purpose: In order to meet an increasing interest in advanced dermatology continuing medical education (CME) delivered asynchronously online, the Distance Learning Initiative (DLI) was developed. Methods: Ten case-based interactive courses, each containing 7 to 14 cases, were developed using a novel, interactive, virtual patient record for online delivery. As learners navigate through the cases to completion, a minimum of 80% correct patient management choices is required to unlock the quiz password, and a minimum of 80% correct quiz answers is required to receive a Category I CME certificate issued with American Academy of Physician Assistants' (AAPA) approval. Results: As of May 1, 2009, five courses containing 49 cases have opened for enrollment, with 533 course completions logged by 207 individual learners. Of the respondents, 86.6% agreed or strongly agreed that the course content was presented at an advanced level of dermatologic expertise, and 85.9% agreed or strongly agreed that the virtual patient record was user-friendly. Eighty-six percent also agreed or strongly agreed that the content increased their knowledge, while 89.9% agreed or strongly agreed that the content met the stated objectives. Conclusions: The project represents a cost-effective opportunity for dermatology physician assistants (PAs) to receive high-quality web-based instruction in a self-paced setting, with transferability of the instructional format to other medical subject areas to meet CME needs. Any subject matter that can be presented in a case-based format could be developed similarly for CME use. The project template is available free to all as an open source document.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medical Assisting and Transcription