The Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance, in partnership with the University of Alabama at Birmingham Division of eLearning and Professional Studies and the UAB Division of Continuing Medical Education, has become the first organization in Alabama to offer performance improvement continuing medical education for exclusively practice-based physicians through its current developmental screening project, Help Me Grow/Project LAUNCH.

Unlike CME lectures, PI CME-approved activities are based on a learner’s participation in a three-stage project in which a physician: identifies an education need through a measure of his or her performance in practice, engages in education experiences to meet the need, integrates learning into patient care, and re-evaluates his or her performance.

ACHIA, which helps pediatric providers improve child health quality, recently developed an online quality improvement, or QI, collaborative that allows practice-based pediatricians and their nursing staffs to earn 20 CME credits as they abstract and review data, hold practice QI meetings, perform PI activities, and make sustainable practice changes to increase rates of developmental screening and referral of children with developmental delays.

The new platform was developed by eLPS, which offers a host of services and technologies to aid UAB divisions in building a portfolio of continuing education courses and certificates to serve the ongoing needs of working adults and practitioners. Several delivery options, including totally online, blended and traditional face-to-face instruction, are supported in professional studies and will be part of a developing online catalog.

ACHIA, a partnership of numerous state organizations, has been housed administratively in the UAB Department of Pediatrics Division of General Pediatrics since January 2014 under the direction of Cason Benton, M.D., FAAP, director and associate professor in the division.

“Providing pediatricians and other physicians with this meaningful type of education as they work in their day-to-day practices is very rewarding,” Benton said. “We look forward to the possibilities that lie ahead as we apply it to the other project work.”

“We are excited about this collaboration,” said Lisa Reburn, Ph.D., director of professional studies and sponsored programs at UAB. “The Help Me Grow/Project LAUNCH project allowed us to test our new continuing education infrastructure and also develop some procedures for collaborating with the UAB division of CME. This will enhance our capacity to offer this opportunity to others at UAB.”

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