Publication Date



Journal of General Internal Medicine


Primary care physicians (PCPs) are often the first line of defense against skin cancers. Despite this, many PCPs do not receive a comprehensive training in skin conditions. Educational interventions aimed at skin cancer screening instruction for PCPs offer an opportunity to detect skin cancer at earlier stages and subsequent improved morbidity and mortality. A scoping review was conducted to collect data about previously reported skin cancer screening interventions for PCPs. A structured literature search found 51 studies describing 37 unique educational interventions. Curriculum elements utilized by the interventions were divided into categories that would facilitate comparison including curriculum components, delivery format, delivery timing, and outcome measures. The interventions varied widely in design, including literature-based interventions, live teaching sessions, and online courses with durations ranging from 5 min to 24 months. While several interventions demonstrated improvements in skin cancer knowledge and competency by written exams, only a few revealed positive clinical practice changes by biopsy review or referral analysis. Examining successful interventions could aid in developing a skin cancer detection curriculum for PCPs that can produce positive clinical practice and population-based changes in the management of skin cancer.


Curriculum, Early Detection of Cancer, Humans, Physicians, Primary Care, Primary Health Care, Referral and Consultation, Skin Neoplasms



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