Continuing education needs assessment of pharmacists in the United Arab Emirates
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Objective The main objective of this study was to offer an insight on the issue of continuing education (CE) in the UAE and to determine the type and format of CE pharmacists in this country prefer to attend and consider most effective. Methods A multi-theme survey was developed to find the reasons pharmacists choose to attend different CE programs, the survey assessed continuing education needs and preferences of pharmacists. Survey items included the types of formats and topics pharmacists prefer to attend and think are most useful to enhance their knowledge and skill. Finally the survey explored some barriers pharmacists conceive as such to attending effective CE. Results One hundred thirty-two surveys were included in this study, the vast majority of the participants were bachelor’s degree holders who were 40 years and younger. The participant’s main types of employment were marketing and hospital practice. Pharmacists’ preferences as for the format and topic type for programs they would like to attend were identified and compared to other practice settings. Barriers to attending effective CE programs were also elicited. Conclusion: Interactive workshops were recognized as the most favorable format for CE in this study, computer and internet-based formats were also ranked highly by participants followed by live-in person and printed material-based programs. Topics covering innovations in pharmacy practice and disease management were at the top of priorities for pharmacists who would also like to see more certificate programs be offered to them.
KeywordsContinued professional development Continuing education needs Pharmacists Survey United Arab Emirates
A special thank you goes to the second and third-year pharmacy students who helped in the distribution and collection of the surveys. The role of the following pharmacists who participated in the piloting phase of the study is much appreciated: Nidhal Baqi, Abdullah Kindi, Fawziyya Sharhan, Zeinab Khalil, and Mohammed Abu-Elkhair.
Conflicts of interest statement
The author declares no conflicts of interest.
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