Perceptions and Satisfaction of a Mandatory Continuing Professional Development Programme Amongst Aotearoa New Zealand Podiatrists
Background Aotearoa New Zealand (NZ) registered podiatrists are required to participate in a mandatory continuing professional development (CPD) programme. This study investigated podiatrist’s perceptions and satisfaction surrounding mandatory CPD requirements following the implementation of a new 2-year CPD programme.
Methods A cross-sectional study of NZ registered podiatrists was conducted between October 9th and December 9th, 2020. Data was collected using a web-based survey. The 39-item survey included questions to elicit participant characteristics, perceptions of CPD, difficulties undertaking CPD, and satisfaction with the new CPD programme. The survey findings were reported using descriptive statistics and conventional content analysis.
Results One hundred and thirty-four podiatrists completed the survey. Most respondents worked in private practice (n = 107, 80 %), were in full-time employment (n = 83, 62 %), and had greater than 16 years of work experience (n = 73, 54 %). Respondents agreed it was important to engage in CPD (n = 126, 94 %) and reported that knowledge gained from CPD contributed to their daily work (n = 78, 58 %). 44 % (n = 58) reported difficulties keeping up to date with CPD. The main barriers to CPD participation reported were workload (n = 90, 67 %) and lack of time (n = 84, 63 %). Three categories (understanding the CPD programme; access to CPD; and time to complete CPD) were identified from the qualitative analysis to describe why it was difficult to meet CPD requirements.
Conclusions NZ podiatrists value CPD and are satisfied with most aspects of the mandatory CPD programme apart from the hours attributed to compulsory activities. The current approach to cultural safety CPD requires revision, with a move away from a time-based approach to a system that promotes an understanding and relevance to practice. Lack of time, practice workload, financial barriers, geographical location, and employment context were factors that influenced a practitioner’s ability to engage in CPD. Facilitation of CPD activities that are flexible to ensure relevance to the practitioner’s specific work within their scope of practice, and that can occur in the workplace environment, may address barriers and increase engagement with to CPD activities.