For many medical education providers, granting Continuing Medical Education credits is fundamental to their business, whether they are a for-profit business or a non-profit entity. Currently, the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) lists just over 1800 accredited organizations, many accredited by ACCME and others by accredited by a state.
There are many more medical education providers that are not accredited, but for whom being able to grant CME is a key to their business model as well. For different reasons, investing the time and capital to become accredited is not an option or a choice, as it takes a considerable commitment of time and resources to obtain and maintain accreditation. PeerPoint was most recently reaccredited in 2016, and I can attest to the time, effort and resources needed to accomplish the task.
Those medical educators that do not, or cannot, invest in accreditation for their organization do have the option of joint providership, where an accredited organization will work with the non-accredited education provider to accredit specific educational activities.
Now, we know what the basic value is in being able to offer CME credits, but is there merit in asking what additional business value is created by the joint provider? I believe so, and I feel that the business value created by a joint provider is related to the business processes with which the joint provider conducts the relationship. Among the business factors that we ought to consider, for example, would be the efficiency in which the joint provider operates. For example, in a survey that PeerPoint conducted recently with joint providers, 70% of respondents indicated that they were using email and PDF’s to collect disclosures, and an additional 22% were using mail and fax. Certainly an inefficient manner in which to operate.
Over the next few months, PeerPoint will be conducting a survey of non-accredited medical educators in order to understand better the current state of joint providership business value. Once the research is complete, we will share the results with our colleagues in the industry.
If anyone would like a copy of the original survey cited above, please contact Kevin Callahan at PeerPoint Medical Education Institute.