Longitudinal Remote SBRT/SRS Training in Latin America: A Prospective Cohort Study

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys


Purpose/Objective(s): Opportunities for long-term clinical training in stereotactic technology are scarcely available or accessible. We report the results of upscaling a longitudinal telehealth training course on stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) and stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) for clinicians in Latin America, after successfully developing a pilot course.

Materials/Methods: A longitudinal training program on implementing SBRT and SRS was provided to several radiation oncology centers in Peru and Colombia at no cost. The program consisted of regular 1-hour live video conferencing sessions weekly for 4 months with interactive didactics and a cloud-based platform for case-based learning. Participant-reported changes in confidence levels were measured in 16 practical domains of SBRT/SRS, based on 1-to-5 Likert scale levels. Pre- and post-curriculum practical knowledge-based exams were required for participation credit. Participant baseline features, completed pre- and post-curriculum surveys, overall and single professional-group confidence changes, and exam results are analyzed and reported.

Results: One hundred and seventy-five different radiotherapy professionals participated. An average of 56 (SD ± 18) attendees per session were registered. Fifty (29.7%) participants completed the pre- and post-curriculum surveys, of which 30% were radiation oncologists (RO), 26% radiation therapists (RTT), 20% residents, 18% medical physicists and 6% neurosurgeons. Significant improvements were found across all 16 domains with overall mean +0.55 (SD ± 0.17, P < 0.001) Likert-scale points. Significant improvements in individual competences were most common among medical physicists, RTT and residents. Pre- and post-curriculum exams yielded a mean 16.15/30 (53.8 ± 20.3%) and 23.6/30 (78.7 ± 19.3%) correct answers (P < 0.001).

Conclusion: Longitudinal telehealth training is an effective method for improving confidence and knowledge on SBRT/SRS amongst radiotherapy professionals. Remote continuing medical education should be widely adopted in lower-middle income countries.





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