Message from the CEO: Making a Difference

December 14, 2015
Posted by: 
Anni Becker

Message from the CEO: Celebrating CME

In describing why she works in CME, one of our volunteers said, "I need to make a difference in the lives of others.” As 2015 draws to a close, I reflect on the accomplishments of our continuing education (CE) community and thank you for the work you are doing every day to make a difference and improve the health of our nation.

The diversity of our community enables CME to be flexible, nimble, and responsive to healthcare needs on the local, regional, national, and international level. Our data shows that CME providers in the ACCME System offer more than 147,000 educational activities each year, comprising more than one million hours of instruction and including more than 25 million interactions with physicians and other healthcare professionals.

Our community is responding to public health imperatives. In support of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS) for Extended-Release and Long-Acting Opioid Analgesics, 82 accredited CME providers reported 449 REMS-compliant activities educating more than 70,000 learners. This is just one example of the leadership, collaboration, and expertise that CME providers bring to healthcare quality and safety initiatives. Two-thirds of accredited CME programs integrate CME into the process for improving professional practice and participate within an institutional or system framework for quality improvement.

In our interactions with stakeholders, we’ve heard that a high priority is to facilitate the alignment of continuing professional development systems and to simplify the integration of Maintenance of Certification (MOC) and CME. The collaboration between the ACCME and American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) is a terrific opportunity to make a real and meaningful difference to physicians. There are now more than 500 activities registered in PARS for ABIM’s MOC program and this week we opened PARS for submission of participant data.

Throughout my career, my passion for education has sustained my passion for medicine—as a physician and educator and now as the ACCME’s CEO, I’ve seen the power of education to drive quality in our profession and in healthcare. In my interactions with the CE community across the country, I’ve seen your commitment to helping overcome the gargantuan challenges facing healthcare. I celebrate your dedication and achievements, and look forward to continuing to work together as we advance CME’s role in the changing health environment and improve care for the patients we serve.

Best wishes for a safe and happy holiday season.

Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc
President and Chief Executive Officer
Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education
(312) 527-9200