The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education and the American Board of Internal Medicine have been collaborating to make it easier to integrate accredited CME with maintenance of certification. The ACCME and ABIM last year streamlined the process so physicians could more easily access accredited grand rounds, conferences, case discussions, online courses, and medical journals that are also approved for MOC credit. According to ABIM President and CEO Richard J. Baron, MD, physicians already have earned about three million MOC points in accredited CME activities. (To learn how to register CME activities for ABIM MOC credit, see this resource on the ACCME website.)
The most recent fruit of their labor is an improved, searchable, sortable web-based tool called the CME Finder. Physicians can tap into the CME Finder to search all CME activities that are registered for ABIM MOC credit by provider, activity, type, end date, whether there’s a fee to participate or not, and whether registration is open or restricted to a specific group.
All CME providers have to do to make it easy for physicians to learn about their activities that are registered for MOC credit is submit their data into the ACCME’s Program and Activity Reporting System, known as PARS, in advance. ACCME does request that CME providers be judicious about choosing specialties that are most relevant for specific activities to avoid frustrating learners looking for the most-relevant topics for their practices. (For more information, visit the CME Finder FAQ.)
The system already automatically transfers data verifying that physicians have completed the activity from PARS to ABIM, so docs don’t have to take any additional steps to add the credits to their ABIM MOC records.
“We are expanding our collaboration to encourage CME providers to continue to innovate and create educational activities that blend medical knowledge and practice assessment opportunities, which allows us to seamlessly recognize a physician’s journey through self-directed learning,” says Baron.
Also in the works are plans to recognize more accredited CME for MOC credit. In addition to Medical Knowledge Activities, by spring 2017 physicians will also be able to earn MOC points for Practice Assessment activities, and in blended activities that earn points in both areas. Physicians can earn Practice Assessment MOC points by completing the appropriate activities even though ABIM has extended the decision not to require Practice Assessment points through the end of 2018.
“We celebrate the expansion of our collaboration with ABIM, because it will generate many more opportunities for accredited CME providers to support physicians by delivering relevant, effective, independent, practice-based education that counts for MOC,” says Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, president and CEO, ACCME. "In its first year, our collaboration has succeeded in making a real and meaningful difference to physicians and educators who are working every day to improve health care in their communities. I look forward to building on that success and continuing to work together with ABIM, accredited CME providers, and physicians to leverage the power of education to drive quality in our medical profession and improve care for the patients we serve.”