To evaluate the effectiveness of a Web-based course on infection control accessed by physicians in training.
A 607-bed urban teaching hospital.
A total of 55 physicians in training beginning their first postgraduate year (the iPGYl group) and 59 physicians completing their first, second, or third postgraduate year (the oPGY group).
Individuals in the iPGYl group took a Web-based course on infection control practices.
Persons in the iPGYl group who took the Web-based course completed an evaluation test consisting of 15 multiple-choice questions (total possible score, 15 points). The same test was given to persons in the oPGY group, who did not take the Web-based course. We compared scores of the Web-based test taken by subjects in the iPGYl group immediately after the course with scores of the test they took 3 months after the course and with test scores of subjects in the oPGY group.
The mean score (±SD) for subjects in the iPGYl group who took the Web-based course was 10.6 ± 2.2, compared with 8.0 ± 2.5 for subjects in the oPGY group (P<.001). The mean score (±SD) for subjects in the iPGYl group 3 months after completing the course decreased to 8.0 ± 2.4 (P< .001 by the paired f test). For the oPGY group, significant differences were found between the scores (±SD) for subjects in the internal medicine (9.9 ± 2.3), emergency medicine (8.4 ± 1.7), pediatrics (7.0 ± 1.7), and family medicine (5.8 ± 1.6) residency programs (P< .001); there were no significant differences in scores according to the year of residency.
Web-based infection control courses are an attractive teaching tool for physicians in training and need to be considered for teaching infection control. The evaluation of information retention will help identify physicians in training who require further training.