PURPOSE. To determine the extent and trends of cooperation in continuing medical education (CME) between community teaching hospitals and medical schools in the United States. METHOD. A questionnaire was sent in September 1992 to the directors of CME at 276 teaching hospital members of the Association for Hospital Medical Education (AHME). The survey was designed to answer two questions: (1) What is the extent of cooperation between hospital CME providers and medical schools? (2) In the next three years will community hospitals seek competitive or collaborative relationships in CME with medical schools? RESULTS. By late April 1993, 216 (78%) of the questionnaires had been returned. Of these, 177 (64% of the sample) were analyzed. Of the responding hospitals, 91 (52%) cooperated with 92 medical schools in CME; 75 (45%) of the hospitals planned to increase cooperation. Only ten (11%) of the hospitals described their current CME relationship with a medical school as "competitive in most areas"; 23 (14%) expected to increase competition in the next three years. Forty-one (24%) of the respondents were part of a community hospital CME consortium; only 20 (16%) of the other institutions expected to participate in a consortium in the next three years. Hospital size and membership in the Association of American Medical Colleges' Council of Teaching Hospitals were generally correlated with current and future competition in CME with a medical school and likely participation in a community CME consortium. CONCLUSION. The majority of teaching hospital members of the AHME perceived that they would have cooperative relationships in CME with affiliated medical schools in the three years following the survey. These collaborative relationships should provide an important basis for the further planning and development of medical education consortia.
(C) 1995 Association of American Medical Colleges