Australian medical regulations and the use of eHealth data analytics to strengthen Continuing Professional Development (CPD). A policy implementation gap analysis with the Australian Specialist Medical Colleges

Carol Pizzuti, Cristiana Palmieri, Tim Shaw

Background: Starting from 2023, Australian medical practitioners will have to meet specific mandatory CPD Standards to renew their registration to practice medicine. Among other requirements, they will be asked to undertake “Measuring Outcomes” CPD activities for a set minimum hours per year.

According to the regulatory policies developed by the Medical Board of Australia (MBA), these activities require the analysis of patient health data to be completed and, ideally, the use of large eHealth datasets and big data analytics technologies for better insights. Australian Specialist Medical Colleges are currently working on the implementation of these particular requirements - even though many of them have voiced their concern around eHealth data accessibility and outcome measurement challenges.

Aims: This study aims to identify the factors that can be addressed by the Colleges to foster data strengthened CPD and to support medical practitioners in completing their mandatory “Measuring Outcomes” activities.

Methods: A policy implementation gap analysis was conducted together with participating Colleges. Specifically, interviews were conducted with those College teams that are responsible of CPD Standards implementation to identify existing barriers and propose a list of recommendations to address them.

Results: It appears that pre-existing internal environmental factors  such as organisational operations, structure, and culture  are currently hindering Colleges’ efforts.

Conclusions: Final considerations and related recommendations will be made at study completion.