Introduction: Behavioral health and other preventable factors account for nearly half of all premature deaths in the United States. Motivational interviewing (MI) is effective for engaging ambivalent patients in behavior change. However, many clinicians report barriers to receiving MI training, including time, cost, and travel. This study examined the effect of a 2-day virtual MI training built around didactic and real-play learning activities.
Methods: Thirty interprofessional clinicians from eight Veterans Affairs medical centers and their community-based outpatient clinics across 4 US states attended a 2-day virtual MI training. Participants completed a posttraining evaluation and a 3-month posttraining evaluation.
Results: Participants reported that they learned new knowledge and skills, and they would be able to apply these to their practice (M > 4).They reported high satisfaction with the training and platform and found the technology easy to use (M > 4). In the 3-month posttraining survey, participants reported that they were using MI in their practice (M = 4.19) and that they would like additional support, such as additional reading (n = 8).
Discussion: This study demonstrates the effect of a 2-day virtual MI training built around didactic and real-play learning activities. Virtual training particularly enhances training opportunities in rural settings. Our training removed travel and payment as barriers to participation.
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