TMA Accreditation Connection

February 2015

What's New in CME?

TMA-Accredited Provider Logo  

TMA now has an accredited CME provider logo available to organizations that receive accreditation (four years).  The logo can be used on brochures, flyers, continuing medical education (CME) webpages, and other materials. Email Casey Harrison to request either the regular accreditation logo or the Accreditation with Commendation logo.

Accreditation Extension Fee

TMA will charge $500 to organizations that request an extension of their current accreditation. If extenuating circumstances prevent a provider from submitting its self-study report for resurvey by the designated deadline, the organization may request an extension of its current accreditation by submitting a written request to the TMA Subcommittee on Accreditation. Requests for extension must be submitted two weeks before the original deadline for the self-study report. The subcommittee may, at its discretion, recommend that the Committee on Continuing Education grant the organization an extension of its current accreditation subject to the following stipulations: 

  • The extension will not exceed eight months.
  • The organization must submit its self-study report for review at the committee's next meeting. 

Self-study/Surveys  

  • Electronic Copy of Self-Study Report
    TMA-accredited providers up for reaccreditation or initial accreditation must submit one electronic copy of the self-study report in its entirety to TMA (in addition to the three binders) as a single PDF on a USB flash drive or burned onto a CD/DVD. 

  • Surveys via Conference Call
    TMA-accredited providers that meet certain criteria (no turnover in primary CME staff contact since the last survey and no progress report during the organization's last two accreditation/reaccreditation decisions) now have the option to choose from an onsite or conference call survey format for the accreditation interview. 

  • Performance-in-Practice Structured Abstract
    CME providers have the option to use the Performance-in-Practice Structured Abstract or to continue using labeled evidence to verify performance-in-practice. Providers are free to choose whether to use the structured abstract or the labels; it is important to note that TMA asks providers to choose one approach (structured abstract or labels) for the accreditation or reaccreditation process. Samples of the structured abstract and labels are available on the TMA website

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Compliance vs. Noncompliance

Definition of Commercial Interest

A commercial interest is defined as any entity producing, marketing, re-selling, or distributing health care goods or services consumed by, or used on, patients.

Check your forms, policies and procedures, and any other documents that may contain the definition of commercial interest to make sure you are using the most current definition of commercial interest.  TMA expects activities and/or forms dated after April 1, 2015 to be in compliance. After April 1, 2015, TMA will begin to find providers in noncompliance if the current definition is not used on documents related to Continuing Medical Education.    

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Annual Report Data and Attestation in PARS Due March 31

If you have not already done so, please access ACCME's Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS) on the ACCME website.

ACCME's resources for using PARS are excellent and include FAQs and these videos:  

If you use batch uploads for PARS, visit ACCME to access the template for the appropriate reporting year. Batch upload templates vary from year to year.  

Finally, if you need assistance with PARS, contact Casey Harrison. Do not contact ACCME; they will direct you to TMA. Also, if no representative from your organization has participated in PARS training, contact the TMA CME office for a consultation.

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Plan to Attend the 2015 Texas CME Conference in San Antonio

Planning for the 2015 conference is under way with registration opening in early April. 

Make your plans to attend:

2015 Texas CME Conference
June 10-12, 2015
Marriott Plaza San Antonio
555 S. Alamo St.
San Antonio, TX 78205

Click here to learn about the hotel.

For budgeting:

  • $335 Registration
  • $175 Special rate for physicians attending Thursday only
  • $149 Room rate, single or double (plus taxes, currently 16.75%)
  • Self-parking, 25% discount (current rate, $25 for overnight parking)
  • Complimentary basic wireless Internet access in guestrooms and event space   

Attending the conference is your opportunity to get CME updates, benefit from best practices, and network with your CME peers. 

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Reminders

Deadlines for Change in Terminology and Modifications to Standards for Commercial Support 

Change in Terminology
TMA expects accredited providers to discontinue the use of the term "sponsor" (e.g., jointly sponsored, joint sponsorship, directly sponsored, and direct sponsorship) for new materials published after Jan. 1, 2015. Please note that this change in terminology applies to accreditation statements for directly and jointly provided activities, as well as other materials.  

Modifications to Standards for Commercial Support (4.3, 6.4, and Commercial Support Acknowledgment Policy) Related to Prohibiting the Use of Commercial Interests' Logos in the Disclosure of Commercial Support
The changes to Standard 4.3 (educational materials that are part of a CME activity, such as slides, abstracts, and handouts, cannot contain any advertising, corporate logo, trade name, or product-group message of an ACCME-defined commercial interest), Standard 6.4 ("disclosure" must never include the use of a corporate logo, trade name, or product-group message of an ACCME-defined commercial interest), and the Commercial Support Acknowledgement Policy (the provider's acknowledgment of commercial support as required by Standards 6.3 and 6.4 may state the name, mission, and areas of clinical involvement of an ACCME-defined commercial interest but may not include corporate logos and slogans) are effective immediately. However, accredited providers are not expected to change or reprint any existing materials. When and how you implement these changes is up to your organization in order to be sensitive to your time and resource constraints. TMA expects that by May 2015 all current activities and all future activities will be in compliance. After May 2015, TMA will begin to find providers in noncompliance if logos of ACCME-defined commercial interests are included with disclosure of commercial support. 

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Got New Staff?

The TMA CME Department can train your staff via conference call, in person, or at your organization or ours. Email Casey Harrison or call (800) 880-1300, ext. 1446, to set up an appointment. 

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