Ronald Johnson, MD, and Medical Association of the State of Alabama Receive 2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Awards

ACCME Award Honors State Medical Society Staff and Volunteers for Their Contributions and Commitment to the Intrastate Continuing Medical Education Accreditation System
Chicago, IL
August 28, 2014

The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME®) is proud to announce the recipients of the 2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Award. Given in two categories, this award recognizes state medical societies, their staff, and volunteers for their contributions and commitment to advancing community-based continuing medical education (CME) programs and the intrastate accreditation system. The recipients will be given their awards during a ceremony at the ACCME State/Territory Medical Society Conference, to be held December 10–11, 2014, in Chicago.

2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Award for Individual Service to the Intrastate Accreditation System: Ronald Johnson, MD

2014 Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Award for Outstanding Collaboration between Accreditors and Providers:
Medical Association of the State of Alabama


Ronald Johnson, MD

Ronald Johnson, MD, FAAFP, was nominated for the award by the Illinois State Medical Society (ISMS). Dr. Johnson has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to CME for more than 30 years. An active member of ISMS since 1976, he has served on the ISMS Committee on CME Accreditation since 1998, holding the position of chair from 2008–2013. He has also served as a member of the ISMS Committee on CME Activities, Council on CME, and Council on Education and Manpower. He currently volunteers as an ISMS accreditation surveyor; he served two terms previously as a surveyor, beginning in 1987. Under his leadership, the ISMS successfully made the transition to the 2004 Standards for Commercial Support℠: Standards to Ensure Independence in CME Activities, the 2006 ACCME Accreditation Criteria, and the 2014 simplification of the accreditation requirements and process.

Dr. Johnson works with regulatory agencies to identify opportunities for accredited CME to support quality improvement and public health initiatives within the state. He currently serves as the Chief Consultant to the State of Illinois Office of Inspector General, Healthcare and Family Services; he has served on the Illinois Medical Licensing Board for over 10 years; and he now serves on the Medical Disciplinary Board; and as the Medical Director of Pike County Health Department. He serves as Board member and Officer of CIMRO-Illinois, CIMRO-Nebraska Quality Review Organization, and most recently of the Great Plains-Quality Improvement Network.

Dr. Johnson has served CME on the national as well as state level. He has been a member of the ACCME Accreditation Review committee since 2010 and he served as an ACCME accreditation surveyor from 1994–1996.

“While I am honored to be recognized for my work in CME I want to emphasize that in my 30 years of service I have worked with hundreds of highly qualified and dedicated individuals on the local, Illinois, and national levels who also work to enhance the quality and value of accredited CME. All of these planners, sponsors, and learners are representative of the spirit of Dr. Rutledge Howard and his vision for the entire CME system as we know it today. I am happy and proud to accept this award as a representative of all of us who work to improve the quality of care to patients through continuing medical education.”—Ronald Johnson, MD, FAAFP

“The Illinois State Medical Society and our members are immensely proud of Dr. Johnson. For better than 20 years he has brought a strong work ethic, humor, and leadership to Illinois’ CME community. His contributions to our organization are many; as he has rarely declined when called upon for service. Dr. Johnson is a proponent of quality in medicine and sees CME as a great vehicle to promote quality at all levels. Honoring him with the 2014 Rutledge W Howard, MD, Award is a much deserved acknowledgement of his impact on continuing medical education.”—William A. McDade, MD, PhD, President, ISMS

“We honor Dr. Johnson for his exemplary work in supporting accredited CME, quality improvement, and public health. The Illinois State Medical Society has benefited from his long-term service, expertise, and commitment, evidence that a state medical society’s success as an accreditor relies on dedicated, expert volunteers. The ACCME is committed to positioning accredited CME as a strategic asset to quality improvement and public health initiatives on the state and national level. We are grateful to Dr. Johnson for his decades of service and valuable contributions to accredited CME.”—Murray Kopelow, MD, President and CEO, ACCME

Medical Association of the State of Alabama

The Medical Association of the State of Alabama (MASA) provides outstanding leadership, education, and support for its accredited CME providers. MASA offers a number of face-to-face and online educational resources to providers, including webinars, a newsletter, reaccreditation conference calls for providers in each cohort, and an annual workshop. The MASA CME Web link offers providers a centralized location for CME resources. MASA staff is available via email and phone to answer providers’ questions. As part of its commitment to provider education, MASA underwrites the costs for one provider each year to attend an ACCME CME as a Bridge to Quality™ Accreditation Workshop in Chicago.

To support professional development, MASA established a state-designated CME professional certification for staff and volunteers. Providers commend MASA CME staff for their in-depth knowledge of accreditation requirements, their thoroughness and attention to detail, their accessibility and willingness to answer questions, their empathetic approach toward providers, and their passion and dedication to CME.

“On behalf of the Education Department staff — both past and present — of the Medical Association of the State of Alabama, I want to convey how honored we are with the decision of the Board of Directors of the ACCME to present us with the Rutledge W. Howard, MD, award for Outstanding Collaboration between Accreditors and Providers. And our most sincere appreciation goes to the providers who nominated us for this prestigious award. In our role as accreditor, we continuously explore unique ways to work with, educate, and communicate with the organizations we accredit with a goal of ensuring every provider meets the ACCME’s high standards for CME and that the CME being offered improves healthcare for patients and the communities they serve in the state of Alabama. To be recognized for our efforts in collaborating with our providers is both humbling and exhilarating.”—Judy DeBray, Director of Education, MASA

“We honor the staff and volunteers of the Medical Association of the State of Alabama (MASA) for their extraordinary efforts in building collaboration with their providers. MASA’s exemplary education and support system enables accredited providers to achieve their goals of improving healthcare for patients and their communities in Alabama. The ACCME is committed to supporting a robust and vital intrastate accreditation system. We appreciate MASA’s dedication to advancing accredited CME in the state of Alabama.—Murray Kopelow, MD, President and CEO, ACCME

About the Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Awards

The awards are named for Rutledge W. Howard, MD, who worked with every state, the District of Columbia, and four territories to develop a system for accrediting intrastate CME providers. There are more than 1,200 providers accredited by ACCME Recognized Accreditors (state or territory medical societies that are recognized by the ACCME as accreditors of intrastate CME providers). Each year, intrastate providers offer more than 40,000 CME activities in communities across the country, educating more than four million health care practitioner participants. The ACCME established the Rutledge W. Howard, MD, Awards to honor Recognized Accreditors for their important role in the national accreditation system.

The ACCME initiated the Rutledge W. Howard, MD, awards in 1997. The criteria have evolved over time to reflect the changing role in the national CME enterprise.

The awards are given in two categories.

• Award for Outstanding Collaboration between Accreditors and Providers: This award honors an ACCME Recognized Accreditor for achieving an exemplary working relationship with its providers by collaborating on projects, issues, or initiatives.
• Award for Individual Service to the Intrastate Accreditation System: This award serves to recognize state staff or volunteers for their service to intrastate accreditation.

The ACCME issues a call for nominations each year. The winners are chosen by the ACCME Board of Directors, based on the applications and nominations received. Only one award is given in each category per year; there may not be an award given every year. More information and a list of previous recipients are available here.

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The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME®) is a nonprofit organization based in Chicago that is responsible for accrediting institutions that offer continuing medical education through a voluntary, self-regulatory system. The ACCME also has a system for recognizing state medical societies as accreditors for local organizations offering CME.

The ACCME's mission is to identify, develop, and promote standards for quality continuing medical education that improves healthcare for patients and their communities. There are approximately 2,000 accredited CME providers in the ACCME accreditation system, whose activities educate more than 24 million healthcare practitioner participants annually.

The ACCME's member organizations, which represent the profession of medicine and include physician licensing and credentialing bodies, are the American Board of Medical Specialties, the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association, the Association of American Medical Colleges, the Association for Hospital Medical Education, the Council of Medical Specialty Societies and the Federation of State Medical Boards of the US, Inc.

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