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Title: Feasibility of Facebook as a tool for providing continuing education to community pharmacists: results of a pilot study
Authors: Pieters, Karen
Delnat, Hendrik
Hanssens, Maxim
Hermans, Stefanie
Vantomme, Margo
Wyns, Eline
Charlier, Nathalie
Verbeke, Koen
Laekeman, Gert
Foulon, Veerle #
Issue Date: Sep-2012
Conference: FIP edition:100 location:Amsterdam date:4-8 October 2012
Abstract: Background
The importance of continuing education (CE) for community pharmacists is widely recognized. The growing use and possibilities of social media could provide new opportunities in the development of online learning environments of the 21st century.
Although research has been conducted in other professional contexts, little is known on the use of social media in continuing education for community pharmacists.
Aim
To determine (1) if pharmacists appreciate social media, and more specifically Facebook, as a tool for CE and (2) if an education module delivered through Facebook can create an increase in knowledge.
Methods
During 3 weeks, Flemish community pharmacists (N=44 of the originally 186 registered) took part in an education module on Facebook. Participants were asked to take part in discussions and to answer questions posted by the moderators. The topics concerned cardiac failure and Parkinson’s disease. Participants completed two surveys before and after the module; one to measure their opinion on the use of Facebook, and another to measure their knowledge.
Results
After completion of the module, 75% of the participants considered Facebook a suitable medium for providing CE. One of the main reasons for not finding Facebook suitable was the lack of anonymity when posting a reaction.
The average increase in knowledge was 14,57% (p < 0,05).
Conclusion
Facebook can be a tool for providing CE to community pharmacists in the future. However, some issues need to be solved, as for instance the privacy issue. The results of this pilot study will be taken into account when developing new ways of coaching pharmacists and students in acquiring competencies.
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IMa
Appears in Collections:Department of Pharmaceutical & Pharmacological Sciences - miscellaneous
Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences - miscellaneous
Research Centre for Pharmaceutical Care and Pharmaco-economics (-)
# (joint) last author

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