The ‘Untold’ truth about Medical CMEs.

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Disclaimer – The following article ‘may’ be a work of fiction and is meant purely for sarcasm and humor, reader discretion is advised.

  1. The major motive of CMEs is not to impart updated knowledge / information but to increase in-patient (for admission) referral by attending GPs.
  2. Most doctors attend CMEs only for the CME points and unlimited buffet food.
  3. Confirmed attendance of the doctors can be doubled or may be tripled if free & unlimited alcohol is on the menu.
  4. Those presenting posters and presentations at such CMEs do it only to show off photographs on Facebook and Instagram. Group photos are uploaded on LinkedIn as publicity stunt and marketing gimmick by hospitals & companies.
  5. Many doctors attend CMEs to utilize their conference leaves, turn the trip into a vacation (if it is in another city) and also to claim travel allowance from their hospitals/medical colleges.
  6. The registration fee of most paid delegates is usually sponsored by a pharmaceutical company, and so is the entire CME.
  7. The most dressed person in the entire auditorium is the girl who brings the bouquet/memento to be handed over to the speakers / dignitaries.
  8. Most of the slides in everyone’s presentation are from Google search, or inspired from Slideshare.
  9. The same presentation already shown by someone will be shown again after few years by the same person.
  10. There will always be 1 person in the audience who will click photograph of every slide, and will never see them ever again.
  11. There will be few ‘ectopics / question banks’ in the audience who ask irrelevant question during presentations to gain unnecessary attention of other people.
  12. A major chunk of the audience is filled up with medical students, interns and residents who are forced to attend for filling up the empty seats in the conference hall.
  13. Residents and Interns staying in hostels start preparing for the CME by ‘fasting and starving’ 3 days in advance.
  14. The caterers at the CME have to make extra arrangements for ‘Non vegetarian’ dishes, Paneer pieces and sweet dishes.
  15. The boredom of the medical students & interns reaches its peak once the data presentation, sensitivity, specificity, and all the other biostatistics ‘bouncers’ appear on screen.
  16. A proxy attendance by resident doctors (for their fellow colleagues) of the hospital hosting the CME is also a common practice, after all who will refuse a free certificate and some CME points.
  17. Many interns/residents are under the misconception that by mentioning ‘Attended ‘XYZ’ Conclave/CME’ in their resume/CV, helps their chances of securing a job.
  18. Also present in the crowd are few ‘cross specialization’ doctors who are short of CME points for their registration renewal, eg. Dermatogist attending a gynecology conclave.
  19. Except the first 3-4 rows, most members of the audience will be found continuously on their smart phones and regularly checking Facebook and Whatsapp, ‘WAITING’ for their patient/staff to call.
  20. People drop their business cards in such CMEs in expectation of getting some benefit out of it, which is a myth only.
  21. The left over / blank CME certificates are never wasted and can be given to friends in desperate need of points.
  22. The string of the delegate entry ID card for the CME is also never thrown away and is always recycled for household purposes.
  23. No CME is complete without the mandatory return gift of ‘Letter pad, pen and folder’. A real icing on the cake is a participation certificate.
  24. It may be a good tactic to serve lunch before the CME, only flipside being the increased somnolescence due to Post lunch hyperglycemia.
  25. CMEs are an excellent cure for insomnia, which is fine as long as the person sleeping does not snore loudly.

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An Emergency Physician by profession; writer, musician, entrepreneur, sportsman and a poet by passion, Dr. Mohit Garg is currently working as Consultant & Head of the Emergency & Trauma department at Sarvodaya Hospital & Research Centre, Faridabad. Apart from his zeal to write, he is also passionate about academics and is involved in teaching activities to young doctors, nurses and other health care professionals. This website is a source through which he fulfills his talent to write, and also to bring about a social change for the medical fraternity.

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