Focused on the ultimate goal of improving patient care in gynecologic medicine, AAGL recognizes the professional responsibility of gynecologists and other clinicians require lifelong learning. Accordingly, the AAGL provides a variety of continuing medical educational programs to ensure our target audience achieves this goal.
Educational activities are developed to meet the needs of gynecologists in practice and in training, as well as, allied healthcare professionals in the field of gynecology.
AAGL’s CME program integrates the latest advances in clinical practice, scientific research and technical innovation that impact learners by increasing their knowledge, competence and performance. A thorough needs assessment determines professional practice gaps, which then becomes the foundation of the rest of AAGL’s planning process.
The content of AAGL’s CME program includes these tenets:
- Through education in basic and advanced gynecologic endoscopic techniques, minimally invasive therapies, and noninvasive diagnostic testing, the knowledge and skill set of physicians and allied healthcare professionals will notably improve.
- By critically examining and discussing diagnostic, therapeutic and surgical practices in gynecology and disseminating pertinent scientific and clinical research, clinicians will get vital information focused on improving professional practice.
- AAGL education focuses on the application of knowledge to practice.
- AAGL educational activities also focus on ensuring that learners actually apply the knowledge and competence from educational activities to practice.
- AAGL educational content takes into account factors outside planners’ control and addresses those barriers in content to overcome them when possible.
TYPE OF ACTIVITIES
The AAGL educates learners through an annual scientific congress and free standing courses.
The Annual Scientific Congress is a comprehensive educational program attended by an international group of physicians and allied healthcare professionals that employs:
- Plenary Sessions, which include peer-reviewed abstract submissions that span the field of minimally-invasive gynecology.
- In-depth Postgraduate Courses on basic and advanced topics in minimally invasive gynecology techniques with appropriate time scheduled for questions and answers.
- Frontiers in Minimally-Invasive Gynecology, which incorporates the structure of panels and debates, covers topics of current interest and critically evaluates emergent diagnostic and surgical therapies in minimally invasive gynecology.
- Telesurgery Sessions that provide the opportunity to observe exemplary surgical techniques and procedures in minimally invasive gynecology, which are televised from national and international locales. The real-time format provides the opportunity for questions and answers between moderator, participants and operating surgeons.
- Free Standing Courses attract an international audience with various instructional formats, from didactic lecture to hands-on in-vitro or in-vivo laboratory exercises. Course content varies, often covering specific areas of identified need by providing a comprehensive overview. These activities may employ:
- Didactic lectures covering basic-to-advanced topics of interest in minimally-invasive gynecology with appropriate time scheduled for questions and answers.
- Video or digital media sessions presenting established and emergent techniques in minimally-invasive surgery with appropriate time scheduled for questions and answers.
- Televised surgery demonstrating exemplary surgical techniques in gynecologic endoscopy.
- Hands-on in-vitro models to simulate fundamental surgical techniques utilized during gynecologic endoscopy.
- Hands-on in-vivo models in a laboratory setting to provide living tissue to simulate surgical techniques and procedures during gynecologic endoscopy.
- Instruction on in-depth evidence-based practice techniques, combining research with clinical expertise. AAGL activities often focus on the larger context of women’s healthcare including quality improvement in a patient-centered, system-based approach.
The desired expectation of AAGL’s CME program is to enhance the learners’ knowledge, their ability to apply knowledge-to-practice (i.e., competence), and performance in-practice.
To facilitate the measurement of expected results, learners are asked—via pre- and post-test, course evaluations, outcomes questionnaires and frequent, comprehensive online (web site and email) surveys—to critically evaluate key aspects of individual activities and how it met their needs.
Critical metrics for these assessments include but are not limited to:
- When indicated, changes in competence are measured using questionnaires at the end of an activity that determines if learners can apply knowledge learned to typical practice scenarios, including specific examples of strategies learners intend to implement in their practice.
- When indicated, changes in performance-in-practice are measured also using questionnaires that determine if key intended results were actually implemented in practice.
- Learner feedback on AAGL application of key aspects of the Standards for Commercial Support, including if the activity was fair and balanced, free from commercial bias, and evidence-based.
- Aspects of the topic in which learners need more information in future CME activities.
- Through assessment of the above data and metrics, AAGL determines the need for overall program improvements and implements them in a timely manner.