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Warren Newton, Gerald Fetter, Grant S. Hoekzema, Lauren Hughes and Michael Magill


One of the most important features of the draft Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) family medicine residency requirements is a call for residencies to participate in learning networks. The American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) believes that such networks are vital to residency redesign. Learning networks are evidence-based interventions that can help scale and spread innovations; develop and connect faculty, staff, and residents within and across programs; provide access to peer-to-peer expertise to identify and solve problems and mitigate the effects of burnout during times of change. In the words of an African proverb, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” This editorial update describes the variety of residency learning networks (also known as collaboratives, academic learning collaboratives, or quality improvement collaboratives), briefly summarizes evidence about key elements of networks, and reviews practical lessons learned.


Newton W, Fetter G, Hoekzema GS, Hughes L, Magill M. Residency Learning Networks: Why and How. Ann Fam Med. 2022 Sep-Oct;20(5):492-494. doi: 10.1370/afm.2885. Epub 2022 Sep 2. PMID: 36228077; PMCID: PMC9512554.

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