Accreditation Council for CME 2015 Annual Report Shows Growth and Diversity of Accredited Continuing Medical Education

Continuing Medical Education Providers Offer More Than 148,000 Educational Activities for Physicians and Teams Where They Live, Work, and Learn
Chicago, IL
July 19, 2016

The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME®) is pleased to announce the release of our ACCME 2015 Annual Report. The report includes data from a community of nearly 1,900 accredited continuing medical education (CME) providers across the country that offer physicians and healthcare teams an array of resources to promote quality, safety, and the evolution of healthcare.

CME providers in the ACCME System offered more than 148,000 educational activities in 2015, comprising more than one million hours of instruction. These activities included nearly 26 million interactions with physicians and other healthcare professionals. The numbers of activities, hours of instruction, and participants have increased since 2014. The number of CME activities has increased an average of 3% each year since 2010.

Accredited CME providers offer a range of online and face-to-face educational activities, giving healthcare professionals access to efficient, relevant, and engaging opportunities for lifelong learning. As this report demonstrates, CME providers design and evaluate activities for meaningful change in participants’ skills, performance, and patient health outcomes.

“This report shows that accredited CME is evolving constantly to meet the needs of new generations of learners and to address emerging healthcare challenges. The numbers in this report represent our CME providers’ ongoing work and commitment to improving the quality and safety of healthcare in their communities. I am hopeful that review of this Annual Report can help healthcare leaders recognize the strategic power of education to drive change and create collaborative communities, and the returns that can be derived from support for and investment in skill development training for healthcare professionals,” said Graham McMahon, MD, MMSc, President and CEO, ACCME.

View a video commentary with Dr. McMahon discussing the highlights of the report.

New in 2015

The functionality of the ACCME Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS) has enabled the ACCME to produce more comprehensive annual reports in recent years. Beginning in 2015, this report now includes additional detail regarding registration fees (including registration, subscription, or publication fees received from CME activity participants), government grants, and private donations (including grants from foundations).

This year providers reported more than $2.4 billion in investment in education from a variety of sources. With the new income categories, the data shows that the majority of income (53%) came from participant registration fees. Commercial support accounted for 28%, advertising and exhibits for 13%, and private donations and government grants less than 2% each.

Stakeholder Community

The ACCME 2015 Annual Report marks the 18th year the ACCME has been publishing information about accredited CME. The ACCME produces annual reports as a service to educators, learners, and other stakeholders in the healthcare system.

ACCME 2015 Annual Report and Supplementary Resources

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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 (CME) 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 CME that improves healthcare for patients and their communities. There are nearly 1,900 accredited CME providers within the ACCME System that offer more than 148,000 activities each year, comprising more than one million hours of instruction and including nearly 26 million interactions with physicians and other healthcare professionals.

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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