Accreditation Council for CME Opens Call for Comment about Proposed Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education
ACCME invites stakeholder input about updating rules on independence to address the changing healthcare environment
The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME®) is pleased to invite stakeholders to participate in a call for comment about the proposed revisions to the rules that protect the independence and integrity of accredited continuing education for healthcare professionals.
The proposed, revised ACCME Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education are based on the feedback the ACCME received from the continuing education stakeholder community. The ACCME’s goal is to streamline, clarify, and modernize the Standards, and to ensure their continued relevance and effectiveness in the changing healthcare environment. The initiative supports the ACCME’s strategic goal to assure the quality of accreditation.
To support participation in the call for comment, the ACCME has prepared an information package including background materials, the proposed Standards, the survey questions, and the current Standards and related policies. Please review these materials before completing the online survey.
The ACCME will accept comments until February 21, 2020, at 5 PM Central.
If you have questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Background and Purpose
Independence is the cornerstone of accredited continuing education: The purpose of accredited education is to assure clinicians and teams a protected space to learn, teach, and engage in scientific discourse free from commercial influence. The proposed, revised ACCME Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education (renamed in the proposal from the Standards Commercial Support: Standards to Ensure Independence in CME Activities℠) are designed to create a clear, unbridgeable separation between accredited education and industry marketing and to ensure that accredited continuing education serves the needs of patients and the public.
The proposed revisions are the result of a year-long, inclusive review process. To oversee the process of review, the ACCME convened the Task Force on Protecting the Integrity of Accredited Continuing Education, with members representing diverse perspectives, including accredited continuing education providers and the public. The Task Force and ACCME leadership engaged with stakeholders in a variety of forums to identify new and existing challenges related to managing the complex issues of disclosure, conflicts of interest, and commercial support in a rapidly evolving healthcare environment.
All Stakeholders Encouraged to Participate
“We encourage all of our colleagues and stakeholders to participate in this call for comment so that we can work together to maintain the independence and integrity of accredited continuing education and its accountability to the health professions and the public. We thank the members of the Task Force on Protecting the Integrity of Accredited Continuing Education for their work overseeing the review and revision process, and we appreciate all of you who have participated in our dialogue so far. We look forward to your responses to our proposed Standards. With this effort, we will assure clinicians and teams that they can continue to trust accredited continuing education to help them to improve their practice and optimize the care, health, and wellness of the patients and communities we all serve.”
—Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, President and CEO, Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME)
The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME®) is a nonprofit organization based in Chicago, responsible for accrediting organizations that offer continuing medical education (CME) and for recognizing state medical societies as accreditors of local CME programs. The ACCME is a cofounder of Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education™.
The ACCME sets standards for CME that reflect the values of the educator community and aim to accelerate learning, inspire change, and champion improvement in healthcare. These standards ensure that accredited CME is designed to be relevant to clinicians’ needs, evidence-based, evaluated for its effectiveness, and independent of commercial influence. Through participation in accredited CME, clinicians and teams drive improvement in their practice and optimize the care, health, and wellness of their patients.
Accredited CME facilitates engagement with physicians and healthcare teams where they live, learn, and work. There are approximately 1,700 accredited CME providers within the ACCME System, across the country and internationally, representing a range of organizations including medical schools, hospitals/health systems, government/military agencies, specialty societies, and insurance/managed-care companies. Accredited providers offer about 180,000 activities each year, comprising more than one million hours of instruction and including more than 36 million interactions with physicians and other healthcare professionals.