One-on-One with Brenna Lynn

Continuing Professional Development and COVID-19

As the Associate Dean of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in the Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Brenna Lynn provides strategic leadership to a team of medical education professionals dedicated to helping doctors and health care professionals in rural and urban communities across BC to improve their knowledge, professional performance and technical skills.

In the past weeks, she and her team have been working tirelessly to ensure that health care professionals across BC have the information that they need to safely and effectively help in the response to COVID-19.

What is Continuing Professional Development (CPD)?

Continuing Professional Development is life-long learning and skill development for health care professionals, with the ultimate goal of improving patient care and health outcomes. It includes all activities that physicians and health care providers undertake formally and informally to enhance their knowledge and skills related to their roles and respond to the needs of their patients. CPD has the power to transform clinical care delivery, support team-based practice, and close gaps in care through enhanced relationships and data-driven practice improvement.

What are some of the education-related challenges that clinical faculty may be experiencing in the current COVID-19 outbreak?

As a result of COVID-19, health care professionals are challenged with the task of delivering quality healthcare in a rapidly changing environment, while also contending with the fact that there is still much that is unknown about COVID-19. Further, physical distancing measures are limiting the opportunities for in-person interaction, which means that all learning has moved to a virtual format.

How is CPD helping to address those challenges?

CPD is quickly responding to the demands of practicing during the COVID-19 outbreak by connecting clinical faculty with the most relevant and reliable resources and educational opportunities related to this outbreak. We are doing this in a safe, easily accessible virtual format, which also encourages connectivity and collaboration between health care professionals.

It is a constant challenge for health care professionals to keep up with the latest practice innovation and medical information, and this is even more of a challenge during COVID-19. With this in mind, we have created a resource hub that has curated resources for health care professionals to help them navigate all of the available information. In addition, CPD is offering COVID-19 webinars, COVID-19 online modules, a personalized COVID-19 Q&A resource, and external links to other high quality COVID-19 programming.

As Associate Dean, Continuing Professional Development, what are your goals during this outbreak?

I believe that the development of exceptional clinicians does not end after undergraduate and postgraduate training. It requires a lifelong commitment to continuing education to foster continuous practice and quality improvement.

As always, during this outbreak our main goals continue to be meeting the needs of our learners by providing timely education on relevant topics, and to keep the health care community connected and supported in incorporating skills, knowledge and best practices to meet the needs of patients.

Do you have a message for the health care professionals who are accessing CPD resources during COVID-19?

As the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, we want to acknowledge and thank the hundreds of faculty members, medical residents, other health care professionals, and frontline staff who are working in extraordinary conditions to provide the best care possible. We cannot thank them enough for the work they are undertaking. These resources and opportunities are being offered by the Faculty of Medicine with gratitude.

Published: May 2020