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05/30/2024

Where do Canadian physicians get their professional insights?

We surveyed the Medical Post audience to better understand where and how they get fresh medical information, whether it be a quick update on a new drug indication, or sharing wisdom with peers in-person.

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Medicine attracts life-long learners for a reason. Not a day goes by without hundreds of new developments that can change how you practice.

But where are Canadian doctors finding and sharing this information? For nearly 60 years, the Medical Post has been proud to be a foundational part of the information infrastructure for Canadian physicians. But we’re a piece of an enormous puzzle. 

So, Canadian physicians, where and how are your peers learning? 

In early 2024, we conducted an audience survey to examine how physicians engage with medical media and other sources of information. 

Notably, in-person (61%) and virtual events (60%) were almost equally popular. As for written material, doctors looked to a wide variety of sources, including scientific journals (66%), websites (58%), print magazines (56%) and e-newsletters (52%). 

Many of those surveyed also directly kept up to date by reading regulatory body guidelines (54%) and health communications of their respective provinces (50%). 

While there’s been an undeniable explosion of health information shared over social (and with it a deluge of mis- and disinformation), the doctors we surveyed use these tools more sparingly for medical info. Facebook (17%) and YouTube (17%) were the most popular, followed by LinkedIn (10%) and X (10%), and TikTok wasn’t at all popular (1%). 

But, how often are physicians actively looking to refresh their knowledge? 

Our survey found physicians use certain sources more frequently. Of those who peruse websites, 66% said they use them weekly or more, while more than half (52%) of e-newsletter readers took a look weekly or more. 

As for specific insights, Medical Post readers said they want even more insights on healthcare news (28%), more on running a practice (17%), family medicine (8%), controversies (6%), physician political issues (5%) and clinical guidelines (5%).

Physician readers who engaged with the Medical Post weekly, were most (44%) likely to do so through our Doctor Daily e-newsletter. About a fifth (19%) use the CanadianHealthcareNetwork.ca site weekly or more and 8% said they engage weekly with the print magazine. 

Our survey drew responses from 100 doctors, 59% of whom were family doctors and 41% some other specialist. A majority (56%) were in Ontario and 44% work in a private medical office and 26% in hospital. 

 

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