Your Voice Matters: The Value of Member Feedback

May 03, 2017

By Thomas George, MD, FACP, Rami Manochakian, MD, and Maura Polansky, MS, MHPE, PA-C
Members, Continuing Medical Education Subcommittee

Headshot of Dr. Thomas George

Thomas George, MD, FACP

Rami Manochakian, MD

Maura Polansky, MS, MHPE, PA-C

As an ASCO member, if you have attended an ASCO meeting, you most certainly have been asked (probably repeatedly) for your feedback. We each desire to know how well we are performing our jobs. As an organization, ASCO is no different.

ASCO requests member feedback on a variety of its programs and services and uses that feedback in many ways, beyond simply improving the educational content and environment for future meetings. Having both diversity and completeness in feedback is critical for ASCO to meet the needs of a broad membership, a rapidly changing practice environment, and the urgency associated with translating new scientific discoveries into care for our patients.

How is your feedback used?

All feedback, regardless of the source, is compiled centrally by ASCO staff and is provided to the member volunteer workforce that comprise ASCO committees, including Annual Meeting and thematic symposia planning committees, and the ASCO University® Editorial Board.

Your feedback influences ASCO’s programs and activities in many ways:

  • Determining and prioritizing educational content for future meetings and courses
  • Meeting planning and improvement
  • Documenting engagement to award Continuing Education (CE) credit and Maintenance of Certification (MOC) points
  • Maintaining Joint Accreditation requirements
  • Evaluating that all educational programs are achieving appropriate learning outcomes
  • Determining how well member needs are being met

How does feedback directly benefit you?

First, feedback gives you the opportunity to share your thoughts about ASCO activities in which you participate. This directly serves your own interests, as the educational content of meetings and materials could be adjusted in the future to even better meet your needs. Second, the feedback helps ASCO synchronize its educational content to diversify media types and learning formats, optimizing your valuable time. Third, with an increasingly diverse membership, ASCO can identify time-sensitive needs that cross professions, career levels, and practice settings. This latter point is particularly important now that ASCO has achieved Joint Accreditation.

How is feedback obtained?

ASCO collects feedback from many sources. Evaluations are embedded into every ASCO-sponsored meeting and ASCO University course. Meeting evaluations include formal feedback obtained through the online CE Portal and the iPlanner as well as informal feedback shared at ASCO-staffed booths, on comment cards, and through audience Q&A participation. ASCO University evaluations are also collected at the completion of every course. Impact surveys sent via email to meeting attendees several weeks after a meeting help gauge the changes influenced by education activities on clinical practice. Occasionally, members may also receive email surveys on timely topics.

Social media (e.g., #ASCO17 on Twitter) is another source that has transformed education, communication, and social connectivity. ASCO pays close attention to feedback shared via social media, and the topics and trends that arise on these platforms help ASCO identify timely and popular themes.

Lastly, you can email during the ASCO Annual Meeting to ensure your feedback gets immediate attention.

What are the results of your feedback?

Member feedback directly resulted in new Pathways Sessions at the 2015 Annual Meeting. Attendees felt it would be meaningful to focus on how molecular sequencing can influence treatment decisions, independent of the tissue of origin. As a result, three special sessions were specifically devoted to this topic.

While all session speakers and topics for live activities are carefully selected, member feedback remains instrumental in helping to ensure complex topics are appropriately and effectively delivered.

Just like its members, ASCO strives for feedback and constructive opportunities to improve. By giving feedback, you can be active in increasing the overall value of your ASCO membership. We look forward to hearing from you!

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