ECHO-Chicago Geriatrics: using telementoring to "geriatricize" the primary care workforce

Gerontol Geriatr Educ. Jul-Sep 2020;41(3):333-341. doi: 10.1080/02701960.2019.1572005. Epub 2019 Feb 1.


The primary care workforce is under-prepared to care for the growing older adult population. Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (ECHO) is a continuing education intervention that connects subspecialists and community health care providers (HCPs) via videoconferencing technology for didactic and case-discussion sessions. Methods: We asked participants to complete 8 to 12 educational telementoring sessions. These sessions were conducted between February 2016 and October 2017. Pre/post surveys of self-efficacy and frequency of practice behaviors were collected from eligible participants. Results: 121 HCPs from multiple sites participated. Of these, 89 (non-trainee status) were eligible to complete surveys. Sixty-two participants (69.7%) completed pre/post surveys. Participants were queried regarding 15 geriatrics competencies. Self-efficacy significantly increased across all competencies after series participation (p < 0.05). Frequency of 8 out of 11 queried geriatrics-centered practice behaviors also increased significantly (p < 0.05). Discussion: ECHO-Chicago Geriatrics offers a novel strategy for improving community HCPs' geriatrics self-efficacy and frequency of geriatrics-centered practice behaviors.

Keywords: Primary care workforce; continuing medical education; technology in education.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Chicago
  • Education, Medical, Continuing
  • Female
  • Geriatrics / education*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Health Workforce / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mentoring*
  • Primary Health Care*
  • Self Efficacy
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Videoconferencing*