Life Science Compliance Update

April 27, 2017

ACCME Announces New Logo and Provider Marks

ACCME

The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) has introduced a new logo, tagline, and color palette that emphasize the lifelong journey of learning and celebrate the continued trajectory of the continuing medical education (CME) community. New marks are also available for CME providers to communicate their accreditation status.

The initiative is part of the ACCME’s efforts to build visibility for the CME community and communicate the value of accreditation and accredited CME. The new visual identity is designed to convey the transformation in accredited CME to better meet the needs of clinicians and teams where they live, work, and learn. It also reflects the ACCME’s evolving role as coach – in addition to regulator – aiming to support, inspire, and motivate the community of educators to achieve its full potential.

The shape of the logo is intended to suggest upward movement and expansion, while the clean lines reflect the precision and accuracy of accreditation, built on the ACCME’s solid foundation. The colors were chosen to show growth and a nurturing environment for education.

“Our new logo represents our aspirations for accredited CME. Working with our community of healthcare leaders, educators, clinicians, and patients, we are leveraging the power of education to advance quality in medicine and optimize care, health, and wellness—today and in the years to come,” said Todd Dorman, MD, Chair, Board of Directors, ACCME.

“Our new logo and tagline capture the role of learning in promoting wellness for all of us. As a physician and CEO of the ACCME, I’m optimistic and excited about our future, as we work together to expand the flexibility, inclusiveness, and diversity of education— with the aim of improving care for the patients and communities we all serve,” said Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, President and CEO, ACCME.

Dr. McMahon and the ACCME staff discuss the meaning of the new logo and tagline in this video.

Marks for Accredited Providers

The new provider marks are adaptations of the ACCME logo, and serve to create a recognizable, consistent visual identity. The marks serve as a message from accredited CME providers to clinicians: continuing education is relevant to your needs, evidence-based, effective, and independent of commercial influence.

Providers directly accredited by the ACCME System and those accredited by ACCME Recognized Accreditors are welcome to use these updated marks beginning immediately. However, use of these marks is optional. More information for providers about how to use the marks is available here.

April 26, 2017

AMA and ACCME Announce Call for Comment on Proposal

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Yesterday, the American Medical Association (AMA) and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) issued a call for comment on their joint proposal to simplify and align their expectations for accredited continuing medical education (CME) activities that offer the AMA PRA Category One CreditTM. The proposal for alignment attempts to encourage innovation and flexibility in accredited CME, while continuing to ensure that activities meet educational standards and are independent of commercial influence.

The proposal is aimed at allowing accredited CME providers to introduce and blend new instructional practices and learning formats that are appropriate to their learners and the setting, provided that they abide by the seven core requirements found within the proposal. Those seven core requirements are aligned with ACCME requirements and do not represent any new rules for accredited providers. Found in the proposal, the AMA simplified and reduced its learning format requirements to provide more flexibility for CME providers.

Under the proposal, CME providers may design and deliver an activity that uses blended or new approaches to driving meaningful learning and change. For these activities, the provider can designate credits on an hour-per-credit basis using their best reasonable estimate of the time required to complete the activity.

Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, President and CEO of ACCME, noted,

We celebrate this collaborative effort with our AMA colleagues and the opportunity to advance the evolution of CME. This proposal reflects the values of our CME providers and supports their aspirations to engage in education that makes a meaningful difference in clinician practice and patient care. We want to do everything we can to encourage innovation and experimentation in CME, so that educators are free to respond nimbly to their learners’ changing needs while staying true to core principles for educational excellence and independence. We thank accredited CME providers for their participation in this process and look forward to their feedback on our proposal and to our continued work together to drive quality in postgraduate medical education and improve care for the patients and communities we all serve.

Susan Skochelak, MD, AMA Group Vice President for Medical Education, was also pleased with the proposal, stating,

Based on the feedback we received from the CME community during listening sessions, we recognize the need to better align the AMA and ACCME’s requirements for CME accreditation and reaccreditation. We believe that our proposal will support the evolution of CME to better meet the needs of educators, physicians, and the patients they serve. We want to hear from the CME community to make sure the proposal addresses their feedback. We encourage CME providers to submit their comments to the proposal so we can continue to evolve to a more streamlined system that meets their needs. 

Following the call for comment period, the AMA and ACCME will analyze the feedback and determine whether to make modifications to the proposal and glossary. Once finalized, the resulting new process will be integrated into the existing accreditation and reaccreditation processes.

If any of our readers wish to comment on the proposal, you may do so here. Comments will be accepted through Thursday, May 25, 2017, at 5:00 pm CST. If you are unable to meet that deadline, but wish to provide constructive comments, email info@accme.org to request an extension.

April 03, 2017

ACCME President and CEO Calls for Healthcare Leaders to Leverage CME

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Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, President and CEO of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), recently published an article in Academic Medicine, “The Leadership Case for Investing in Continuing Professional Development.”

In his article, Dr. McMahon calls upon healthcare leaders to recognize and appreciate the power and capacity of accredited CME to address many of the challenges in the healthcare environment, from clinician well-being to national imperatives for better health, better care, and lower costs. McMahon also offers principles and action steps for aligning leadership and educational strategy, while urging institutional leaders to embrace the continuing professional development of their human capital as an organizational responsibility and opportunity.

McMahon opines that CME is “an underused and low cost solution that can improve clinical performance, nurture effective collaborative teams, create meaning at work, and reduce burnout.” He believes that to optimize CME benefits, clinical leaders need to think of CME as a way to help drive change and achieve institutional goals, in concert with quality improvement efforts, patient safety, and other systems changes.

McMahon notes, “The perception of CME as only lectures in dark rooms or grand rounds with dwindling numbers of participants listening passively to an expert is increasingly anachronistic. Equally outdated is the view that CME is about rubber-stamping applications for credit. The end point of CME is not the credit that’s attained for licensing, certification, or credentials; rather, it is learning.”

A CME program that is properly utilized – with a multi-professional scope and educational expertise – can contribute to initiatives that focus on clinical and nonclinical areas alike. Some such initiatives can include quality and safety, professionalism, team communication, and process improvements. By supporting the achievement of quality and safety goals and engaging in public health priorities, CME programs can help organizations reach various strategic goals and demonstrate leadership.

He further argued that to “reap the greatest return on your institution’s investment in education, you will need to build a collaborative learning culture. We acculturate clinicians to be decisive and confident, but patient safety is compromised when confidence is not matched by ability. Promoting self-awareness as part of your institution’s culture is key to improving patient care and safety because it allows clinicians to stop if they are unsure, seek advice from a colleague or access resources, and ensure they are making the right decision at the right time.”

Additionally, “[b]reaking down silos among professions and throughout the medical education continuum, including the involvement of undergraduate and graduate medical education leadership, improves efficiency and the allocation of resources across an institution’s educational programs. An integrated learning environment that enables health care professionals, residents, and students to share conferencing space, learning management systems, and other resources will help drive team development.”

In conclusion, Dr. McMahon notes, “Healthcare leaders who recognize the strategic value of education can expect a meaningful return on their investment – not only in terms of the quality and safety of their clinicians’ work but also in the spirit and cohesiveness of the clinicians who work at the institution.”

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