Policy on Enduring Materials
Definition of Enduring Materials
The ACCME defines CME enduring materials as non-live CME activities that endure over time. Enduring materials exist in various formats, such as the Internet, podcasts, satellite broadcasts, videotapes, monographs, DVD, CD Rom or other formats that allow the learning experience to take place at any time in any place.
CME Information Provided to Learners
For enduring CME activities in which the learner participates electronically (e.g., via Internet, CD-ROM, satellite broadcasts), it is the policy of AAGL that the following CME information be transmitted to the learner prior to beginning the CME activity in such a manner that the information must be read, without an opt-out option, before proceeding to the content of the activity:
- Direct or joint sponsorship statement
- Name and credentials of faculty
- Release and expiration dates, review dates (if activity is extended)
- Time to complete the activity, including the evaluation and/or post-test (same as AMA PRA Credit designation statement)
- Disclosure statements of anyone with a financial relationship with the supporter(s) or manufacturers of products related to the content (if none, state no relationships), but must include the roles of everyone involved in the development/planning or execution the activity
- Acknowledgment of commercial support
- Medium or media used
- Method of participation (instructions describing how learners will participate in the activity and receive CME credit)
Evaluation and Post Test
- AAGL requires each enduring material to include an evaluation that measures outcomes related to the designation of the activity (competence, performance, and/or patient outcomes), an assessment of the learner’s achievement of the activity goal or learning objectives based on minimum thresholds established by AAGL. Learners must demonstrate a determined level of mastery of the material presented. The minimum level of performance criteria is 60%.
- Evaluation and post tests are considered part of the CME content and ads must not appear between the CME content and these aspects of the CME activity.
Securing CME Credit
AAGL determines CME credit for each activity based on a good faith estimate of the amount of time it will take learners to complete the activity, as determined by a small sampling of the target audience to determine the average length of time to complete the activity.
Credits are awarded to learners (1) who meet the minimum performance level as stated above and (2) as claimed by the learner up to the maximum credits for which the activity was certified.
Enduring activities are approved for up to three years or less depending on the half-life of the information in the activity as determined in the original planning process or as indicated by new scientific developments. Prior to renewing an activity, AAGL will convene a panel of experts to ensure that content is accurate and up-to-date.
Maintenance of Copies of the Enduring Material during the Accreditation Cycle
AAGL maintains a paper or electronic version of each enduring material, even after it has expired, during the current accreditation cycle so that it may be viewed upon request by the ACCME.
Placement of CME Activities on a Site Owned or Controlled by a Commercial Interest
If an activity is web-based, it is the policy of the ACCME and AAGL that such enduring materials be placed either on its own website, or if another site provides distribution of the activity as a vendor, then that site may not be owned or related to a commercial interest.
Advertisements in Enduring Materials
AAGL does not permit advertisements in enduring materials.
Referencing Trade Names
As a general rule, AAGL does not reference trade-named products in its enduring materials. Should a situation arise in which the use of a trade name is warranted because learners would not recognize the generic or scientific name of the product referenced in the context of treatment discussions, then all products mentioned should reference their trade names so as not to distinguish the products of a company supporting the activity.
Maintaining Independence in the Planning and Execution of an Enduring Material
AAGL requires that the planning and execution of enduring materials ensure the following:
- The content of CME activities does not promote the proprietary interests of commercial interests.
- CME activities gave a balanced view of therapeutic options and conform to the generally accepted standards of experimental design, data collection and analysis.
- Recommendations involving clinical medicine in a CME activity are based on evidence that is accepted within the profession of medicine as adequate justification for their indications and contraindications in the care of patients.
- Content does not contain recommendations, treatment or manners of practicing medicine that are not within the definition of CME, or are known to have risks or dangers that outweigh the benefits, or are known to be ineffective in the treatment of patients.
- Distribution of Course Content by a Commercial Interest
AAGL does not permit representatives of commercial supporters to assist in the distribution of enduring materials. However, at the request of AAGL, a commercial supporter may assist in the distribution of materials that promote the availability of the enduring material so long as it is produced by AAGL and that material clearly identifies AAGL as the CME provider and the supporter for the provision of an educational grant.
* This policy was approved by the Professional Development Committee on 2/24/14