Continuing Medical Education (CME) programs are often required for those with careers in the medical field to maintain a medical license. Because medical knowledge and technology expands frequently, healthcare workers must keep up to date with the latest innovations in medicine to better serve patients. CME programs are geared toward specific areas of the medical field and medical professionals must check with their state laws to make sure they are meeting CME requirements for their individual field.
CME programs are regulated in the U.S. by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME). ACCME certifies the instructors and materials for most required or acceptable CME courses. So, to make sure you are receiving proper credit for the courses and programs you participate in, it is advised to choose CME activities based on information provided directly by ACCME. CME courses for physicians are labeled as “prescribed credit,” while all other courses are labeled as “elective credit.” Prescribed credit CME courses require a certificate of completion, while elective credits do not. See the ACCME page for more information on the requirements for CME courses to meet accreditation (http://www.accme.org/accreditors/recognition-requirements).
Choosing a Program
According to ACCME, 150,000 CME courses are offered across the country each year. To locate a CME courses near you, visit the ACCME website to use their CME provider finder tool (http://www.accme.org/find-cme-provider). Click on your state (or the state you might be interested in taking a CME course) to bring up a list of all courses offered in the state for the year (see image below).
Below is an example of a search for CME courses in Colorado. Click on “Details” on the right to reveal dates and additional information on the course that meets your needs.
CME courses are often offered as fun events in exciting locations such as Las Vegas, Jamaica, Hawaii, or Walt Disney World, Florida. To see a list of conferences being offered for 2017, visit http://www.mceconferences.com/medical-conferences.php.
CME Course Formats
CME courses can take place through in-person events or through live online streaming. More and more CME courses are using this format for convenience and to limit travel expenses. The American Academy of Family Physicians offers a list of accredited, online CME events on their website for 2017 (http://www.aafp.org/events.html).
MyCME also offers a breakdown of CME courses by field. Many of which can be taken online for credit (http://www.mycme.com/topic-homepage/section/4160/).
If you would like to see MomMD’s Top 10 CME programs list, check it here: https://mommd.com/top-10-continuing-medical-education-websites.shtml.