Objectives: A relatively high proportion of occupational medicine (OM) specialists have not had formal residency training in OM. Members of the Western Occupational and Environmental Medicine Association, a professional organization of OM specialists, completed a postal questionnaire (160 of 561 members). Methods: Educational background, practice setting, practice activities, and skills considered relevant were compared between those with and without formal training. Results: Both groups had considerable focus in clinical care, musculoskeletal medicine, and workers' compensation. However, those with formal training practice in a broader variety of settings were less likely to have practiced another specialty, and used additional skills (toxicology, industrial hygiene, and epidemiology) in their practices. Formal education appears to create a greater diversity of skills and opportunities, but it does not appear to create a group of physicians disinterested in "front- line" occupational medicine practice. Conclusions: The data support the need for formal residency programs but also highlight the importance of access to formal training for midcareer physicians.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Journal of occupational and environmental medicine|
|State||Published - Feb 2005|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health