ACCME Letter to Sen. McCaskill Addresses Opioid Investigation

April 24, 2017
Posted by: 
Patty Harrison

The ACCME submitted a letter to Sen. McCaskill, Ranking Member, Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, to address her investigation of the opioid epidemic. In the letter, Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, President and CEO, ACCME, describes the role of the ACCME standards in safeguarding the independence of accredited CME and the contributions of the CME community to addressing the opioid epidemic.

The ACCME wrote the letter to address Sen. McCaskill’s investigation into the role of industry in promoting opioids. Sen. McCaskill sent letters to opioid manufacturers, asking about their funding of CME and their funding of organizations, including some accredited CME providers. In the letter, she says that manufacturers have "apparently attempted to influence prescribing behavior" through commercially supported CME.

In his letter, Dr. McMahon states that the ACCME shares the Senator’s concerns and is committed to leveraging the power of education to improve prescriber practice and to promote safe and effective care for patients. Dr. McMahon explains that the hallmark of accredited CME is independence—promotion or marketing is prohibited in CME accredited within the ACCME System. “It is critical that your inquiries distinguish between the promotion activities of industry and activities in accredited CME,” he writes.

Download the ACCME letter here.

More information about Sen. McCaskill’s investigation is here.