Clinicians prefer simple educational tools for implementing practice change

Med Teach. 2011;33(11):e602-6. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2011.610838.


Background: Successful implementation of practice change requires educational tools that engage and motivate clinicians.

Aim: To examine clinician usage and preference for different educational tools when a multifaceted strategy was used for implementation of new recommendations for managing newborns at risk of sepsis.

Methods: Seminars, web-based tutorial, handouts, pocket cards and web-based management algorithm were used to educate health professionals. Ninety-two clinicians attended seminars and completed feedback questionnaires that included three questions assessing knowledge of the recommendations. After 3 months, an electronic survey containing the same questions was sent to 41 key stakeholders (staff neonatologists, trainee physicians, nurse practitioners and respiratory therapists) who provided patient care during the implementation period. Compliance with recommendations was assessed by chart audit.

Results: Seminar content was helpful to 97% of participants and 88% were comfortable using the recommendations. Response rate for the 3-month survey was 80%. The most frequently used and useful tools were pocket cards (76%) and seminars (76%); 79% continued to use the card. Only one respondent used the web tutorial and four used the algorithm. There was no significant difference in percent correct responses to the questions between the two timepoints (p > 0.05). Compliance with the recommendations was 83%.

Conclusions: When provided with different educational tools, clinicians prefer pocket cards and seminars - tools that are simple and readily accessed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Consumer Behavior*
  • Education, Medical, Continuing / methods*
  • Humans
  • Medical Staff, Hospital / education
  • Ontario
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Teaching / methods*