Education and training for medical trainees and allied healthcare professionals: the use of online platforms
Background: Cochrane UK and Ireland Trainee Advisory Group (CUKI-TAG) delivers engagement activities for medical trainees and healthcare professionals across the UK and Ireland to improve the understanding and practice of evidence-based health care. The increasing use of online platforms for education allows greater flexibility in the timings and range of attendees.
Objectives: To review the feedback and numbers of interaction on social media from training and engagement events.
Methods: Three types of events were held. CUKI-TAG ran six online journal club discussions presenting findings of a research paper on social media through the Cochrane UK accounts. CUKI-TAG contributed to the delivery of two afternoons of webinars for medical, surgical, and dental trainees alongside Cochrane UK staff, and 2 two-hour webinars for nurses and allied healthcare professionals alongside Cochrane UK and Cochrane Ireland staff. The number of interactions on social media, attendees, and feedback from the webinars was reviewed.
Results: Between 2020 and 2022, six events were held by CUKI TAG on Cochrane UK accounts. Five events were held over one evening on Twitter with the number of engagements (which includes likes, retweets, comments) ranging from 665 to 1,432. The latest event was spread over five weekday evenings on Twitter, as well as Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook. The number of twitter interactions remained similar (1,094), with 104 likes across the other social media platforms. The medical trainee webinars were attended by 88 participants with a 42% attendance rate from those who signed up. Approximately 90% of those who gave feedback found it very or extremely helpful; 73% found it at least very engaging with 95% interested in attending future events. The nursing and allied healthcare webinars were attended by 109 participants, who were mostly nurses but from 9 different backgrounds, with a 38% attendance rate from those who signed up. Around 88% of people felt webinar was helpful, whilst 66% found it to be at least very engaging.
Conclusions: Using a range of online platforms for training and engagement is deliverable, with good feedback on interactive webinars. This allows interested parties to attend from wherever they are, increasing the wider reach of such events.