Enhance It - Enhancing Hospital Laboratory Standards for Continuing Professional Development: Transnational Evaluation of a Novel CPD Activity for Specialists in Laboratory Medicine (2014)

Type of publication:
Conference abstract

Martin J, Gasljevic V, Sálek T, Horvath A, Borg C, Flegar-Meštrić Z, Jakovcic M, Silhavik J, Adonics A, Szlamka Z, Brincat I, Buttigieg D, Ciantar N, Sciortino AL, Mifsud A, Adkins A, *Bennett T, Rice K, Taylor Y.

The Future of education 2014

A project which has received funding of over 100,000 euros from the European Union’s Lifelong Learning Leonardo Program is developing good practice in continuing professional development (CPD) for Specialists in Laboratory Medicine. The Partnership is developing an EU-toolkit for delivery of high quality CPD activities provided by European hospital laboratories. This paper reports on the first stage of the project which is transnational evaluation of a novel European CPD activity by hospital laboratories in Croatia, Czech Republic, Malta and the United Kingdom. An innovative CPD activity was designed to facilitate participation by Specialists in Laboratory Medicine in all partner countries. The topic of Health and Safety was chosen to enable maximum European participation as it is a multi-disciplinary topic of relevance to all Specialists in Laboratory Medicine in all partner countries. A series of thirty images of either good or bad laboratory practice in Health and Safety were provided to participants who were required to state whether the photograph depicted good or bad practise. If bad practise was shown Specialists in Laboratory Medicine were asked to explain what further actions would be taken including reporting procedures. On completion of the exercise, participants took part in a discussion group, completed a reflective learning sheet and filled in an evaluation questionnaire. Subsequently, in order to contextualise the CPD activity within their own laboratories participants will be asked to note any poor practice in their laboratory, discuss with colleagues, develop an action plan, repeat at monthly intervals and report on Health and Safety improvements. Over one hundred Specialists in Laboratory Medicine from four different European countries Croatia (n=14), Czech Republic (n= 10), Malta (n=65) and UK (n=29) took part in this new CPD activity. Several different grades of laboratory staff evaluated the activity and indicated that the exercise had been useful and appropriate to their scope of practice (99.2%) and relevant for their own CPD (97%). For over 80% of participants, this was the first time that they had taken part in this novel format of CPD activity. Discussion with colleagues following completion of the activity provided useful enhancement to both scope of practice (92%) and CPD (87%). Subsequent completion of a reflective learning sheet was shown to be beneficial for 86% of participants. We conclude that participation in this novel CPD activity which demonstrated a 100% overall satisfaction rate, has facilitated enhanced European cooperation between participating hospital laboratories and will provide a platform for future more intensive European co-operation by Specialists in Laboratory Medicine to work closely together to harmonise their practice and profession throughout the European Union.

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