Free Open Access Meducation (FOAM) is an international movement of physicians engaging in the production and distribution of free and openly accessible online resources about medicine. The goal is to educate colleagues, learners and whomever is interested.
The great thing is that you can often learn from masters in their professions, even if you are on the other end of the globe. The content is so good, often exceeded the efforts of many of my university lecturers.
It’s all about medical knowledge, skills, and clinical reflections. These are usually delivered in a fun way, so that you enjoy exploring the contents. The biggest community so far is Emergency Medicine/Critical Care, but other specialities begin to pick it up as well. Anybody who produces FOAM content will extend his own knowledge base. Additionally, your colleagues will be able to learn.
It’s probably best to see some FOAM in action.
To get you started: three of my favorite talks
- Healthcare in Hippocrates Shadow by David Newman delivered at SMACC (link)
- Karim Brohi on Tranexamic Acid in Trauma (link)
- The Day I Didn’t Use Ultrasound by Mike Mallin hosted on Emcrit (link)
My favorite podcasts
- EMCrit blog & podcast (iTunes!). This has been one of the greatest sources of my online learning so far.
- SmartEM. The site is offline, but you can find old podcast contents on iTunes. The content is a blast!
- The SMACC conference (Social Media in Critical Care – iTunes!). Their speakers are a blast, and many contents are accessible online, all for free. Good ones: airway dogmalysis, what to believe and when to change, resuscitation dogmalysis, and the state-of-the art intra-arrest talk.
More online resources
- Life in the Fast Lane. Very rich website. They have a busting weekly Research & Reviews post as well as a weekly review of what has been going on in the FOAM world. The collections section extends into infinity. I really like the clinical disease section of the page for review (eg on adrenal insufficiency).
- Don’t Forget the Bubbles. Loads of pediatrics specific contents.
- Resus.me is a great online blog. Try the How to be a hero podcast.
- The Academic Life in EM (ALIEM) page. They have cool contents, and I like their PV memory cards and the how I work smarter series.
The deeper you dive, the more you find. The contents at this moment are already outrageously diverse and often of really high quality. Focus and persistence with 1 or 2 of the options above = winning strategy.