Continuing medical education (CME) is essential in an environment where change is constant, like medicine. It is also a critical part of being a good clinician.
Healthcare professionals rely on accredited CME programs that help them continue improving their practice, skills, and patient care for the rest of their career.
Medical professionals can use accredited CME to meet requirements for certification, credentialing, membership in medical societies, and other professional activities and privileges.
Traditional methods of staying up to date with medical knowledge include activities such as attending conferences and reading journals. However, both of these activities involve the one-way transfer of knowledge.
There are also accredited CME courses and programs offered every year across the country, tailored for every medical specialty.
These programs cover the full range of topics important to the improvement of health care. They also include chances for interaction among physicians, nurses, and other healthcare professionals, increasing opportunities for knowledge sharing.
Accredited CME courses and programs are offered through a wide range of formats and structures, including one-on-one training, online simulations, traditional teaching, team-based learning, and more.
Many CME providers are also developing mobile apps making their CME programs and courses available on smartphones and tablets.
This is not only more efficient for medical professionals who often don't have time to fit required CME into their busy schedules, but also a lot cheaper.
This is a no-brainer because approximately 94 percent of physicians use mobile devices to access medical information, including CME resources.
Many mobile medical apps integrate CME activities, but there is also a lot of apps that work only as CME resources.
Last year, we compiled a list of some of the best mobile apps to help medical professionals with CME/CE credits.
Although it didn't make to that list, ReachMD app is another useful resource to help healthcare professionals keep up with medical content and earn continued medical education (CME) credits through various activities, such as listening to discussions and then taking the exams afterward.
ReachMD app doesn't just include CME content, but other content as well, including video, audio, slides, and text-based programs. The app contains more than 9,000 medical broadcasts featuring clinical research, medical practice, disease management, and patient care strategies.
In order to use ReachMD app users don't necessarily need to register an account, however, if you want a content that is tailored to your specialty/occupation, I'd suggest you to register with your email.
The home page differs slightly for registered and unregistered users, where registered users see the additional Recommended section. Other sections visible at the top of the screen include Medical news, Popular, Clinical practice, Medical interest, CME, and so on.
The content is well organized well with thumbnails and titles of the discussions, as well as the type of the content, i.e. video, audio, texts, or slides. All content that brings CME/CE credits is indicated.
To earn credits, users need to listen to discussions, which are mostly about primary care related topics and about 30 minutes long.
After listening to the discussion, the users can take a short test to earn CME credit, ranging from .25 to 1.0 (AMA) credits depending on the topic. Users can also take a pre-test before starting a CME activity.
The discussions feature knowledgeable doctors explaining the evidence-based medicine clearly in order to help users understand the topics they discuss.
Users can tune into live discussions on ReachMD radio featured at the bottom of the screen. You can check on air shows scheduled for a particular day or listen to the playlists.
There is a search feature which allows users to quickly find a discussion of their interest, however, it's not well implemented (search results are shown in Google Search-like format).
Users can also search for the meetings or job openings.
While the interface is easy to use, allowing easy navigation between discussions, it is painfully slow, at least on Android. Discussions open slowly, thumbnails take forever to load, although I've tested the app on a fast connection.
The biggest advantage of this ReachMD app is the ability to use it on your mobile device and listen to discussions and radio podcasts while driving from home to work. It requires a constant Internet connection tho, whether via WiFi or mobile data.
Overall, ReachMD app is a very good app. There are still few things that need to be fixed, particularly its slow interface and search feature. Despite this, the app is still useful resource allowing medical professionals earn their CME/CE credits in an easy and accessible way.
Benefit: The app is suitable for clinicians across the different specialties, who can use it for CME credit. Medical students can also use the app, especially 3rd and 4th years that could benefit from these discussions the most.