Center for Continuing Professional Development
The Center for Continuing Professional Development (CCPD), David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA is to support the continuing education needs of the medical community by providing high-quality, evidence-based activities designed to narrow the professional practice gaps of its learners.
The educational interventions are designed to help learners maintain and enhance clinical skills and knowledge, keep abreast of new and evolving medical concepts pertaining to effective diagnostic and treatment strategies, remain current with basic science research, and foster professional development in procedural skills, communication and teaching skills, and bioethics.
The mission of the CCPD at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA is to support the continuing education needs of the medical community by providing high-quality, evidence-based activities designed to narrow the professional practice gaps of its learners. The expected results are to improve the competence and performance of our learners and, where possible, patient outcomes. Evaluation methods used to gauge the effectiveness of these activities may include pre- and post-activity competency measures such as self-efficacy measures (i.e., changes in learners’ confidence in approaching clinical problems), change statements (expressed intent to change behavior or incorporate newly acquired strategies in their practice), performance on patient case studies and vignettes, and quality practice measures.
In 1945, the University of California Board of Regents voted to establish a medical school as part of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). The medical school’s first class began attending classes in the fall of 1951. At the time, continuing medical education was integrated within UCLA Extension, where it operated as a division within the Department of Continuing Education in Health Sciences. In addition to sponsoring CME programming produced by the school of medicine, the Department of Health Sciences was also responsible for continuing education activities in Dentistry, Nursing, and Allied Health.
The Department of Health Sciences recruited Dr. Martin Shickman as the University Coordinator for Continuing Medical Education to expand UCLA’s involvement in CME. Through Dr. Shickman’s leadership, the Department of Health Sciences became proactive, recruiting faculty and expanding the program both vertically and horizontally so that almost all clinical departments and divisions in the school of medicine participated.
When a new Dean for Education was appointed to the UCLA School of Medicine in 1991, discussions began within the medical school’s leadership about assuming the responsibility for continuing medical education to better meet the educational needs of physicians at the local, regional, and national levels. In response to philosophical differences regarding budget and administrative services, a committee was formed to evaluate the operation of the CME office at UCLA Extension. The committee recommended that the CME unit be located out of UCLA Extension and instead in a joint CME office between the medical center and the school of medicine.
A Task Force was appointed to evaluate the services the CME program provided and to recommend how to restructure and reorganize it to better meet the needs of the school’s departments. The recommendations were accepted in their entirety. An implementation strategy was adopted, staff was hired, once space was constructed, and in May of 1994, the Office of Continuing Medical Education officially opened its doors within the organization of the UCLA School of Medicine. Until 2022, the CME Office remained under the same leadership which allowed it to successfully achieve multiple accreditation cycles, inclusive of accreditation with commendation.
Since its inception, the program has been a key component of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA medical education continuum. Recently, the Office of CME, changed its name to the Center for Continuing Professional Development (CCPD) to align with the future direction. The CCPD Office continues to be housed organizationally in the Dean’s Office of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA under the supervision of the Executive Vice Dean, Dr. Clarence Braddock. Daily operations and strategic direction of the office is overseen by an Associate Dean, Dr. Charles C. Flippen II, M.D., F.A.A.N., F.A.N.A., and Administrative Director, Ericka Cunningham, MBA. The CCPD leadership continues to utilize a team approach and shared decision-making in virtually all aspects of the governance of the program.
The CCPD ventures towards a dynamic future by leveraging technology innovations, enhancing interprofessional & EDI education initiatives, expanding scope and reach, and introducing cutting edge practices. As such, the program will build upon the foundational successes of fostering and maintaining positive cooperative relationships that exist between the CCPD staff, the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA faculty, cross-functional collaboration and the other constituents whom the program has served.