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A Look Into the CME Crystal Ball

We had some thought-provoking conversations with our CME colleagues at Alliance 2020. As we reflect on our takeaways from the conference, there's one underlying question that makes us hopeful, perplexed, and excited all at the same time. Our team at i3 Health wants to know…

What will the future landscape of the CME industry look like?

Here are some of the trends that we've picked up on from the musings of the CME community at Alliance 2020:

1.  Increasing standards for outcomes

Everything is data! In the age of data, the CME industry is not exempt. We all know data collected from healthcare providers through CME programs holds deep insight into practice standards and even patient outcomes. However, are we doing all we can to unlock this insight? If you went to any of the 10 (or more?) outcomes sessions at Alliance this year, maybe you also felt the pressure to rise above the status quo.

2.  We're just starting to "speak the same language"

We want to say that we're grateful to the folks involved in the Outcomes Standardization Project and Alliance's Speaking the Same Language Project for their efforts to get supporters, accreditors, and providers on the same page. They've started from ground zero- defining everyday words that we all seem to be using differently (who knew the word "participant" could have so many definitions?), before tackling the more complex task of establishing outcomes best practices. We predict that these efforts will not only streamline communication between CME stakeholders, but maybe—just maybe—allow for more precise, aggregate outcomes across the industry. Stay tuned.

3.  Racing to keep up with technology

We hear medical students are practicing on virtual bodies instead of cadavers?! With advances in AI, VR, and AR quickly integrating into the threads of standard education for healthcare students, we're challenged to think of what will happen when these future healthcare providers come to us for continuing education.

4.  Navigating the "accidental career"

Most CME professionals stumble onto this career path after transitioning from other professions. Our industry is able to provide a place for everyone and their various skill sets. However, in order to keep up with the changing times, we foresee the need to raise awareness of the CME profession to all. Calling all rising data analysts, graphic designers, statisticians, AI engineers, and others—the CME industry needs you!

What do you think? What trends do you feel are indicative of the future of CME? 

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