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July 1988

Improving Pediatricians' Compliance-Enhancing Practices: A Randomized Trial

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, University of Rochester (NY) School of Medicine and Dentistry (Drs Maiman, Liptak, and Nazarian); the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor (Dr Becker); and the School of Social Work, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (Dr Rounds).

Am J Dis Child. 1988;142(7):773-779. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1988.02150070087033

• Previous evaluations of continuing medical education (CME) have yielded conflicting results regarding its effects on physician knowledge, performance, and subsequent patient outcomes. Poor adherence by mothers to prescribed pediatric regimens is a separate, but well-documented, problem. In the present study we assessed the ability of CME to: (1) increase the knowledge of pediatricians about compliance-enhancing strategies; (2) increase the performance of these practices by pediatricians; and (3) improve mothers' compliance with antibiotic regimens for their children's otitis media. Ninety pediatricians were randomly assigned to either a control group or one of two CME interventions: tutorial plus printed materials or mailed printed materials only. Following the interventions, data on compliance and on reported behaviors of pediatricians were gathered from a random sample of mothers (N =771) whose children were being treated for otitis media. Findings indicated that CME increased physician knowledge and compliance-enhancing practices and resulted in improvement in mothers' adherence to therapy.

(AJDC 1988;142:773-779)