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Frequently Asked Questions

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What are the state CME licensure requirements for MDs?
According to the Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine, in order to renew a license, completion of 100 credit hours of continuing medical education in the preceding biennial period, which runs from January 1 of the odd year through December 31 of the next even year, will be required for medical doctors.

Per Act 31 of 2014, two hours of board-approved continuing education in child abuse recognition and reporting requirements must be completed for renewal or reactivation of a license. Details and a list of board-approved providers can be found at dos.pa.gov. Verification of completion must be sent electronically and directly from the course provider. It may take up to seven days for the provider to submit the records to the board’s office.

Twenty (20) of the 100 credit hours must be completed in AMA PRA category 1 activities.

At least 12 of the 100 hours must be completed in activities related to patient safety or risk management and may be completed in either Category 1 or 2.

The remaining credit hours shall be completed in either category 1 or category 2 approved activities.

Credit will not be granted for courses in office management or practice building.

What are the state CME licensure requirements for DOs?
According to the Pennsylvania State Board of Osteopathic Medicine, in order to renew a license, completion of 100 credit hours of continuing medical education in the preceding biennial period, which runs from November 1 of an even year through October 31 of the next even year, will be required for osteopathic physicians.

Per Act 31 of 2014, two hours of board-approved continuing education in child abuse recognition and reporting requirements must be completed for renewal or reactivation of a license. Details and a list of board-approved providers can be found at dos.pa.gov. Verification of completion must be sent electronically and directly from the course provider. It may take up to seven days for the provider to submit the records to the board’s office.

At least 20 credit hours must be completed in American Osteopathic Association (AOA) Category 1-A approved activities.

At least 12 hours of the 100 hours must be completed in activities related to patient safety or risk management and may be completed in either Category 1 or 2.

The remaining credit hours shall be completed in AOA Category 1-A, 1-B, or Category 2 or AMA Category 1 or 2.

Credit will not be granted for courses in office management or practice building.

What will I need to report in order to renew my license?

The Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine is not requiring a report of CME at the time of license renewal. The license renewal form will contain an area for physicians to attest that they have completed the required hours. By attesting that the requirement is completed, a physician may be subject to a random audit by the Board of Medicine. If audited, a physician will need to show evidence of the completion of the required credit hours. Failure to produce the requested evidence will result in a fine and possible suspension of license.

What are the Opioids Continuing Education requirements that physicians must complete?

Physicians seeking re-licensure must complete at least two hours of continuing education in pain management, identification of addiction, or the practices of prescribing of opioids. These two hours count as part of the 100-hours required for continuing education, not in addition to the 100-hour requirement. To clarify, these hours must be completed during the 2017-2018 licensure period as part of the re-licensure process for 2019-2020, and each licensure period thereafter.

Does the opioids continuing education need to be Category 1 or Category 2?

The Pennsylvania Department of State that both the State Board of Medicine and the State Board of Osteopathic Medicine will accept continuing education courses in either Category 1 or Category 2 for the purpose of compliance with the requirements of Act 124 as long as the content meets the Board-required subject matter noted above.

Will PAMED's opioids CME programs help meet these opioids education requirements?

Yes, the below opioids education program offered to PAMED members can help you meet the requirements:

Addressing PA's Opioid Crisis: What the Health Care Team Needs to Know - Includes sessions on prescribing, dispensing, identifying addiction and referral to treatment, and pain management. Take the CME.

What counts for patient safety/risk management requirement?

The Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine has approved the following list of topics that will satisfy the patient safety/risk management requirement:

  • Improving medical records and record keeping
  • Reducing medical errors
  • Professional conduct and ethics
  • Improving communication among physicians and with other health care personnel
  • Communication between physicians and patients
  • Preventive medicine education
  • Health care quality improvement

If I have 12 Category 1 credit hours in patient safety or risk management topics, may I count these for both the Category 1 requirement and the patient safety/risk management requirement?

Yes. If any of the patient-safety credit hours that a physician has earned are Category 1 credit hours, they can be counted toward both the Category 1 requirement and the patient safety/risk management requirement.

What does AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ represent?

AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ represents that the physician has participated in an educational activity, and completed all requirements for such an activity, that is expected to “serve to maintain, develop, or increase the knowledge, skills, and professional performance and relationships that a physician uses to provide services for patients, the public or the profession” as stated in the AMA’s definition of CME.

Click here to learn more information about AMA PRA Category 1 Credit

For what purpose is AMA PRA Category 1 Credit used?

The purposes for which AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ is used include meeting CME requirements established by hospital credentialing bodies, state medical boards, medical specialty certifying boards, medical specialty societies, Joint Commission and other organizations. AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ is the most commonly accepted form of CME credit for physicians and is also the basis for receiving the AMA Physician’s Recognition Award.

Click here to learn more information about AMA PRA Category 1 Credit

How does a physician claim AMA PRA Category 1 Credit directly from the AMA?

Physicians may claim AMA PRA Category 1 Credit directly from the AMA for the learning that occurs in the following activities approved by the AMA Council on Medical Education:

  • Teaching in Live CME Activities – Credit may only be claimed for preparing and presenting an original presentation at a live activity that has been certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit (if the physician did not claim credit from the accredited CME provider for the activity).
  • Publishing articles - Publishing, as a lead author (first listed), a peer-reviewed article in a journal included in the MEDLINE bibliographic database.
  • Poster presentations - Preparing a poster presentation, as the first author, which is included in the published abstracts, at an activity certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit.
  • American Board of Medical Specialty (ABMS) member board certification and Maintenance of Certification (MOC) - Successfully completing an ABMS board certification or MOC process.
  • Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited education – Successfully participating in an ACGME-accredited residency or fellowship program.
  • To claim the credit physicians must submit to the AMA a copy of the completed Direct Credit Application or Resident Credit Application, along with the required documentation and appropriate processing fee. Complete instructions are found on the form itself.

What is AMA PRA Category 2 Credit?

Category credit hours are self-designated and claimed by individual physicians for participation in education activities not designated for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit that complies with the AMA definition of CME and a physician finds to be a worthwhile learning experience related to his/her practice.

Examples of learning activities that meet the requirements for AMA PRA Category 2 Credit include but are not limited to:

  • participation in educational activities that have not been designated for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit
  • teaching physicians, residents, medical students or other health professionals
  • unstructured online searching and learning
  • reading authoritative medical literature
  • consultation with peers and medical experts
  • small group discussions
  • self-assessment activities
  • medical writing
  • preceptorship participation
  • research
  • peer review and quality assurance participation

Click here to learn more information about AMA PRA Category 2 Credit

How do I document Category 2 Credits if I am audited?

Category 2 Credit must be documented in the form of a physician log or diary.

Category 2 Credit Documentation must include:

  • activity title
  • subject or content area
  • date(s) of participation (i.e., month/day/year)
  • number of credits claimed

A Category 2 Continuing Medical Education Reporting Form can be found on the Pennsylvania Department of State website.

Who regulates CME?

Two organizations share the responsibility nationally for CME accreditation. The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), through the Pennsylvania Medical Society, accredits organizations like Einstein Healthcare Network to provide AMA PRA Category 1 Credit.

The American Medical Association (AMA) identifies the types of activities that can receive credit and sets the rules for which whether an activity can be designated as AMA PRA Category 1 Credit or claimed as AMA PRA Category 2 Credit. In addition, the AMA directly gives credit for some specific activities that are not designated by an ACCME accredited provider (e.g., publishing an article).

How can I document and track my CME credits?

Einstein Healthcare Network uses eeds to help physicians document and track CME Credits. If you have an account but need your subscription activated please contact the CME Office. A subscription will allow you to download a CME transcript and log outside CME credits.

I am an Allied Health Professional; how do I collect a certificate for a learning activity I attended?

Allied Health Professionals are able to create an eeds account, complete evaluations, and download one certificate per day. It is recommended that you download and save your certificates directly after the CME activity.

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