Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




To investigate the improvement in electrocardiogram (ECG) interpreting skills after a standardized ECG interpreting program as a continuous medical education activity among primary care physicians. Materials and methods: The study was conducted in Turkey between December 2006 and October 2010. Out of the 81 provinces in Turkey, 17 were randomly selected and all physicians were invited to take the course on a voluntary basis and in total 798 physicians agreed to participate. The course was a half-day program. A test was applied to the participants before and after the training. The results of 781 participants were analyzed. Results: Of the participants, 417 (59.1%) were men and 288 (40.9%) women. The participants had graduated between 1977 and 2009. Mean scores participants received from the pretest and final test were 31.0 ± 21.9% and 86.3 ± 14.4%, respectively (t = -58.4, P < 0.001). Of the participants, 673 (86.2%) failed and 108 (13.8%) passed the pretest, whereas 23 participants (3.0%) failed and 746 participants (97.0%) passed the final test (\chi^2 = 1083.6, P < 0.001). Conclusion: Structured education programs like this one have a positive contribution to the knowledge and skills of physicians. Undergraduate and postgraduate education on ECG interpretation should be arranged for primary care physicians.


Electrocardiogram, primary care, medical education

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