ACCME Names Graham T. McMahon, MD, MMSc, as New President and CEO; Murray Kopelow, MD, Receives Inaugural Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award

Published Date: 
Wednesday, January 28, 2015

ACCME Names Graham T. McMahon, MD, MMSc, as New President and CEO Beginning April 2015
Executive Summary of December 2014 ACCME Board of Directors Meeting Now Available
Murray Kopelow, MD, Receives Inaugural Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award
Leadership Summit for Jointly Accredited Providers Convened by ACCME, ACPE, and ANCC

Education and Outreach
Registration Now Open for April 2015 CME as a Bridge to Quality™ Accreditation Workshop
2014 ACCME State/Territory Medical Society Conference Focuses on Leadership and Performance in the National CME System

Career Opportunity
ACCME Manager, Monitoring and Improvement

Reminders for Accredited Providers
2015 ACCME Annual Accreditation Fee; Complete Your 2014 Year-End Reporting in PARS; PARS Improvements for Reporting of 2015 Activity and Program Data

For Your Reference
“Letter from America,” by Murray Kopelow, MD, Journal of European CME
“Accreditation Council Honors Local Physician,” Pike Press

In Case You Missed It
CME as a Strategic Resource: Discussion of the American Hospital Association Report; Compliance Reminders—Standards for Commercial Support: Standards to Ensure Independence in CME Activities


ACCME Names Graham T. McMahon, MD, MMSc, as New President and CEO Beginning April 2015

The ACCME Board of Directors is pleased to announce that it has chosen Graham T. McMahon, MD, MMSc, as the new President and CEO.

Dr. McMahon begins his tenure in April 2015, following the retirement of Murray Kopelow, MD, MS(Comm), the current President and CEO. Dr. Kopelow will continue to lead the ACCME during the transition period and will work with the Board of Directors and Dr. McMahon until July 31, 2015, to ensure a smooth leadership transition process.

At the time of his retirement, Dr. Kopelow will have completed more than 30 years of exemplary service to the CME community, with 20 of those years spent as the ACCME’s Chief Executive. He leaves the ACCME in a healthy financial position, with an energetic, creative, and dedicated staff. During his tenure, the ACCME and accredited continuing medical education have grown in stature, importance, and relevance.

A medical educator, researcher, and practicing endocrinologist, Dr. McMahon joins the ACCME from Harvard Medical School, where he serves as Associate Dean for Continuing Education and Associate Professor of Medicine. He teaches extensively at Harvard Medical School and at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, serves as Editor for Medical Education at the New England Journal of Medicine, and as Executive Editor for the NEJM Knowledge+ program

Read more in our news release.

Executive Summary of December 2014 ACCME Board of Directors Meeting Now Available

The ACCME has released the executive summary of its Board of Directors meeting, held December 3–4, 2014, at its Chicago offices. The ACCME ratified 39 accreditation and reaccreditation decisions. This included 12 providers that received Accreditation with Commendation (31%), which confers a 6-year term of accreditation. The ACCME also ratified decisions for 2 providers applying for Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education™.

Read more about the Board of Directors meeting in the executive summary.

Murray Kopelow, MD, Receives Inaugural Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award

Murray Kopelow, MD, President and CEO, ACCME, received the inaugural Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award from the Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions (ACEhp) during its Annual Conference held in January in Dallas. The award was presented to Dr. Kopelow in recognition of his 20 years of leadership, which has resulted in impressive growth, advancement, and recognition for accredited CME nationally and internationally.

In accepting the award, Dr. Kopelow thanked his wife, Cathy Bachman, without whose support “I couldn’t have made any of these contributions; I couldn’t have had the nerve to come and take this role.” He also expressed his appreciation for the ACCME Board of Directors, volunteers, and staff, describing them as the foundation of his success.

Reflecting on his role as ACCME CEO, Dr. Kopelow told the audience that he felt his job was to support those whom “I have always believed to be the most important people in the continuum of medical education—and that’s you, the continuing medical education professionals.”

Looking ahead to the transition of leadership for the ACCME, Dr. Kopelow said, “CME has always been about the future…. It keeps reinventing itself. Now is no exception to that. We are fully engaged as a CME enterprise in these concepts of ‘CME as a Bridge to Quality’ and ‘continuing medical education as a strategic asset’ to those who are trying to improve health, healthcare, and healthcare professionals. That is why I was so pleased when the Board of Directors of the ACCME chose Graham McMahon as the next custodian of this important role. Graham clearly has the vision and energy that is going to be needed for this and always has been.”

In conclusion, Dr. Kopelow said, “I believe the future of CME is bright. I hope you enjoy the future as much as I have enjoyed contributing to getting us to this fork in the road…. I want to thank you all for your lifetime of achievement in continuing medical education.”

Dr. Kopelow received several standing ovations. The ACCME and its colleague accreditors, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), held a reception in Dr. Kopelow’s honor following the award ceremony.

The ACCME also participated in the following events at the Alliance Conference:

  • Dr. Kopelow gave a presentation to a standing-room only audience about the future of medical education. He described the evolution of accredited CME and how it has become a strategic asset for medical education across the continuum of education and for public health initiatives. Looking to the future, he explored how accredited CME needs to evolve to meet the lifelong learning needs of the emerging generations of physicians who—as digital natives—learn, think, and process information differently than preceding generations. The ACCME has produced a brief video version of this presentation, available here.
  • The ACCME hosted a breakfast discussion for ACCME surveyors. The event was attended by more than 60 stakeholders, including ACCME volunteer surveyors, staff and volunteers representing Recognized Accreditors, and members of the ACCME Accreditation Review Committee and Board of Directors. Dr. Kopelow introduced Graham T. McMahon, MD, MMS as the next President and CEO of the ACCME. Dr. McMahon thanked the surveyors for their contributions and said that he appreciates the opportunity to work with them as he takes on the role of ACCME CEO. ACCME staff discussed the accomplishments surveyors made during 2014. Thanks to surveyors’ contributions, the ACCME made 156 accreditation, reaccreditation, and joint accreditation decisions in 2014. Evaluations from providers and surveyors showed that more than 90% of respondents reported positive experiences with the process. The ACCME trained 15 new surveyors in 2014 and looks forward to training more new surveyors in 2015. Training sessions for new and experienced surveyors are held throughout the year. The ACCME welcomes applications for new surveyors. Visit the Volunteers Web page for more information.
  • Kate Regnier, MA, MBA, Executive Vice President, ACCME, participated in the “Overview on Accreditation Super Panel.” She explained how the ACCME Accreditation Criteria safeguard independence and foster the role of accredited CME as a strategic asset for public health initiatives. Ms. Regnier and her colleagues from the ACPE and ANCC described how Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education™ offers organizations the opportunity to be simultaneously accredited to provide medicine, pharmacy, and nursing continuing education activities through a single, unified application process, fee structure, and set of accreditation standards.
  • Ms. Regnier participated in a panel presentation about the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Clinical Learning Environment Review (CLER) Program. She discussed how accredited CME aligns with CLER’s focus on patient safety and quality improvement. She explored how accredited CME can support change and improvement in the clinical learning environment across the medical education continuum.
  • Dion Richetti, Vice President for Accreditation and Recognition, ACCME, participated in a panel discussion along with Recognized Accreditors. He and the other panelists provided practical tips for navigating the accreditation process.

Leadership Summit for Jointly Accredited Providers Convened by ACCME, ACPE, and ANCC

The ACCME, the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), convened a Leadership Summit for Jointly Accredited Providers at the ACCME’s offices in October. The goal of the inaugural summit was to offer an opportunity for jointly accredited providers—as leaders in the continuing healthcare education community—to build a strategic plan for advancing healthcare education by and for the team. Using national stakeholder reports such as the American Hospital Association’s Continuing Medical Education as a Strategic Resource and the Institute of Medicine’s Best Care at Lower Cost: The Path to Continuously Learning Health Care in America as a call to action, participants reflected on how the community of jointly accredited providers and continuing education accreditors can support interprofessional collaborative practice and demonstrate its contributions to healthcare improvement. Participants included leadership from the three accreditors and from organizations that have received joint accreditation or are interested in joint accreditation.

A summary of the Leadership Summit is available here.

Launched in 2009, Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education™ is a collaboration of the ACCME, the ACPE, and the ANCC. Joint Accreditation promotes interprofessional continuing education specifically designed to improve interprofessional collaborative practice in healthcare delivery. The first and only program of its kind, Joint Accreditation offers organizations the opportunity to be simultaneously accredited to offer interprofessional activities planned by the team for the team as well as to offer individual medicine, pharmacy, and nursing CE activities. Joint Accreditation offers a single, unified application process, fee structure, and set of accreditation standards.

For more information, visit Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education.

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Registration Now Open for April 2015 CME as a Bridge to Quality™ Accreditation Workshop

Registration is now open for the ACCME's 2015 CME as a Bridge to Quality™ Accreditation Workshop scheduled for April 23–24 in Chicago. In response to attendees’ feedback and to meet your individualized learning needs, we are continuing to offer the improved features first introduced in 2014. As we have done in previous years, we will hold "Self-Study for Accreditation" sessions in conjunction with each workshop.

Designed for all levels, from CME novices to masters, the Accreditation Workshops offer participants the opportunity to work closely with ACCME staff, national CME leaders, and colleagues to learn practical strategies for complying with accreditation requirements and positioning CME as a Bridge to Quality within their organizations.

More information on the April workshop is available here. Another workshop will be held August 6–7, 2015; information on the August workshop is available here. Registration for the August 2015 workshop will open in spring 2015. If you have questions, please contact Saifra Khan, Coordinator, Education and Outreach, at

Special Features for 2015

  • Flipped classroom approach: We’ve incorporated this educational model to give you the opportunity to gain knowledge on your own time prior to the workshop, so that during the event you will have more time to focus on problem-solving, analysis, and interaction with peers and experts.
  • More interaction: We’ve reduced the number of didactic sessions and included more discussion time, vignettes, cases, and examples throughout the workshop.
  • Small group discussions: Integrated throughout the workshop, these sessions give you the opportunity to build on the information presented at the general sessions and discuss strategies for improving your CME program with your peers.
  • Learner-centered breakout sessions: Choose breakouts on topics of specific interest to your organization and explore these issues with your colleagues.
  • Public Health Imperatives Forum: Explore opportunities for your organization to contribute to public health improvement. Read about the Public Health Imperatives Forum we offered in April 2014.

Pre-Workshop Optional Sessions

  • Self-Study for Accreditation: This session will be offered by invitation only for providers that are seeking initial accreditation or expecting their next reaccreditation decision in July 2016, November 2016, or March 2017. We will send information to eligible participants early in 2015. If you are in one of these decision groups and you do not receive your invitation by the end of February, please contact Saifra Khan, Coordinator, Education and Outreach, at
  • Newcomers Introduction to Accredited CME: Designed for participants involved in CME for one year or less, this session will introduce you to CME basics, enabling you to get the most out of the workshop.

Feedback from 2014 Workshop Participants

  • “The whole workshop was valuable to me. This was my first exposure to much of the material presented. I now have a better idea of how our CME program should be structured for success.”
  • “The flipped classroom style is perfect for learning the material. The breakouts gave us an opportunity to learn great ideas from experienced professionals in the field.”
  • “Working in the breakout sessions was very helpful in getting information and feedback from colleagues and breakout leaders. The insights from these will be valuable in going back to the office to develop new strategies for and approaches to practice.”
  • “I really liked hearing how other companies/entities handle CME planning. I heard some great ideas that I can easily incorporate into my program. I also realized that I may be making more work for myself than I need to.”
  • “I thought the case studies and discussion that ensued over them were extremely helpful. I got useful information and strategies out of each type of learning/session offered—the plenary sessions, the breakout groups, and the Q&A.”
  • “Thanks also for the great public health panel. The workshop took on an academic tone when you brought people on the cutting edge of some of the hot topics in medical and interprofessional education. I felt that this was one of the most helpful and exciting parts of the workshop.”

2014 ACCME State/Territory Medical Society Conference Focuses on Leadership and Performance in the National CME System

The 2014 ACCME State/Territory Medical Society Conference, held December 10–11 in Chicago, brought together leadership, staff, and volunteers from 40 Recognized Accreditors. In addition, participants included guests from the ACCME Board of DirectorsCommittee for Review and Recognition, the American Medical Association (AMA), and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). The conference was the culmination of a year of engagement and collaboration between the ACCME and Recognized Accreditors (state/territory medical societies recognized by the ACCME as accreditors of intrastate CME providers).

The conference theme was “Leadership and Performance in the National CME System.” Participants discussed how accredited CME at the state level is a force for changing practice and improving health, and explored how CME needs to evolve to meet the needs of emerging generations of healthcare professionals. Leaders from the Illinois State Medical Society (ISMS) gave a presentation reflecting on the important role of Recognized Accreditors in supporting accredited CME and the strategic value that accredited CME brings to Illinois.

Guest speaker Kevin B. Weiss, MD, MPH, Senior Vice President for Patient Safety and Institutional Review, ACGME, provided an overview of the Clinical Learning Environment Review (CLER) Program and discussed the linkages between CLER and CME and the opportunities for CME to provide strategic value to graduate medical education.

Several sessions focused on Maintenance of Recognition and the Markers of Equivalency. The ACCME shared detailed data that has been gathered through Maintenance of Recognition about the Recognized Accreditors’ processes and decision making. The data collection is a quality assurance tool to support equivalency, enabling the ACCME to determine if Recognized Accreditors are applying the national standards for accreditation decisions and the accreditation process.

The conference included the presentation of the 2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Awards. Given in two categories, this ACCME award recognizes state medical societies, their staff, and volunteers for their contributions and commitment to advancing community-based CME programs and the intrastate accreditation system. The 2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Award for Individual Service to the Intrastate Accreditation System was given to Ronald Johnson, MD. The 2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Award for Outstanding Collaboration between Accreditors and Providers was given to the Medical Association of the State of Alabama (MASA). Read more about the recipients in our news release. Pike Press, a local publication in Pittsfield, Illinois, wrote an article about Dr. Johnson’s award: “Accreditation Council Honors Local Physician.”

The Recognized Accreditors paid tribute to Murray Kopelow, MD, President and CEO, ACCME, with an award honoring his 20 years of dedicated service to accredited CME. Dr. Kopelow will retire later this year.

Throughout the year, the ACCME offers a range of educational, outreach, and support services to Recognized Accreditors, including monthly webinars and the annual conference. In 2014, ACCME staff participated in the local professional development activities at Recognized Accreditor events in 22 states.

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ACCME Manager, Monitoring and Improvement

The ACCME is looking for an experienced accreditation or CME professional to fill the full-time position of ACCME Manager, Monitoring and Improvement, in our Chicago office. As part of the ACCME Accreditation team, the Manager is responsible for day-to-day management of the monitoring and improvement activities, including the processes for pre-applications, complaints and inquiries, corporate structure and corporate change reviews, and audits. The Manager is also responsible for implementing the ACCME’s question-answering service for accredited CME providers and other stakeholders, and for providing staff support to the volunteer Accreditation Review Committee. Candidates should have a minimum of five years of experience in accredited continuing education, including experience with ACCME accreditation. An advanced degree or equivalent work experience is a requirement. Candidates must be dedicated to continuous improvement and quality assurance processes and value a highly demanding environment.

Interested candidates should submit their CVs, references, and salary requirements to Barry Newman, SPHR, Senior Human Resources Field Representative, The Synergy Companies, Inc., at

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  • 2015 ACCME Annual Accreditation Fee: We have sent invoices to ACCME-accredited providers for the 2015 ACCME annual accreditation fee, with payment due by February 2, 2015. If you have not received your invoice, please contact Consistent with last year, in 2015 this fee will again be $5,300. The 2015 fee schedule is available here. The invoices were addressed to the person designated by your organization as the billing contact. Please login to the Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS) to view and, if needed, update the billing contact for your organization. Please note: This information applies only to ACCME-accredited providers, not to providers accredited by a state medical society. Intrastate providers should check with their accreditor for information regarding accreditation fees.
  • Complete Your 2014 Year-End Reporting in PARS: To meet your year-end reporting requirements, you must enter data for your 2014 activities and your 2014 program summary in the ACCME’s Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS). PARS is always open and we encourage you to start entering 2014 activity data now in anticipation of the year-end reporting deadline. You are welcome to enter basic information about an activity before it has taken place and complete the entry after the activity has occurred. Deadline: For ACCME-accredited providers the deadline for completing the 2014 year-end report is March 31, 2015. Providers accredited by a state medical society may be required to complete their 2014 year-end report earlier, and should check with their accreditor for information. For 2014, providers have the option to report the competency(ies) that each activity was designed to address. To accommodate this change, the instructions and templates for batch uploading 2014 activity data have been revised and can be found here:

Tab-delimited batch upload

XML batch upload

For more information and links to educational resources, please visit our About PARS web page.

  • PARS Improvements for Reporting of 2015 Activity and Program Data: The Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS) is open for data entry for the 2015 reporting year and as we previously announced, you will find we have made some changes in PARS for this 2015 reporting year. The deadline for completing data entry for the 2015 reporting year is not until March 31, 2016, but we are reminding you now in order to give you time to prepare and to familiarize yourself with the changes. As always, you can enter basic information about an activity before it has taken place and complete the entry after the activity has occurred. There are no changes involved in opening activities. For more information, visit About PARS.

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  • Letter from America,” by Murray Kopelow, MD, President and CEO, ACCME, published in the Journal of European CME on January 20, 2015, explores the differences between accreditation systems in the US and Europe and proposes a strategy for creating a single set of CME/CPD accreditation standards in Europe. Dr. Kopelow says that a European CME/CPD standard would foster the development of a network of European CME/CPD providers and would enable physicians to use CME/CPD activities to meet maintenance of licensure requirements in Europe. This is the third “Letter from America” in Dr. Kopelow’s series. In the “Introductory Letter from America,” published in January 2014, Dr. Kopelow explained that he was writing the series at the invitation of the editor, to describe the current CME environment in the US. The “First Letter from America” focused on independence and the US approach to separating CME from promotion.
  • “Accreditation Council Honors Local Physician,” published by Pike Press, announces that Ronald Johnson, MD, was given the 2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Award for Individual Service to the Intrastate Accreditation System.

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