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Sharrie Cranford (right), director of the University of South Alabama Continuing Medical Education (CME) Office, and Yolanda Mack, CME program assistant, pose with a certificate of Accreditation with Commendation from the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME).
The University of South Alabama College of Medicine’s Office of Continuing Medical Education (CME) was awarded Accreditation with Commendation, a six-year term, by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) at its July 2015 meeting.
Accreditation with Commendation is awarded to providers that demonstrate compliance in all criteria and the accreditation policies.
"Accreditation with Commendation is the highest honor for CME providers," said Dr. Samuel Strada, dean of the USA College of Medicine. "These findings demonstrate our commitment to support excellence in clinical care by providing superb ongoing medical educational opportunities for physicians."
The CME Office provides educational programs designed to enhance the knowledge, skills, attitudes and clinical competence of physicians in order to improve the quality of health care and patient outcomes for the citizens of Alabama and surrounding communities. CME activities include lectures, materials, grand rounds, patient care reviews, and specialty seminars.
The ACCME’s decision was based on the review of the department’s self-study report, evidence of performance-in-practice, and the accreditation interview. The review committee commended the program for meeting the accreditation requirements and for demonstrating an excellence in continuing medical education and its engagement with the environment in support of physician and allied health learning and change that is part of a system for quality improvement.
“Our office strives for excellence in the services we provide and in the way we provide them, said Sharrie Cranford, director of USA’s CME Office. “We are dedicated to meeting the highest standards as set by the ACCME, AMA, and other governing bodies. Our programs serve to educate all health care providers in our region through education and research.”
Cranford said the goal of the department is to improve patient outcomes through its many educational programs.
According to the ACCME’s report, the organizational structure at USA has positioned the office to be a change agent within the organization. CME staff is represented on and collaborates with key organizational groups across the institution that share the goal of improving professional practice.
These groups, including the organization’s Performance Improvement Committee, the Quality Assurance Committee, the Graduate Medical Education Committee, the Faculty Development Committee, the Health Disparities Research Group, Quality Matters, and the End of Life Protocol Committee, to name a few, use core performance measures and hospital data routinely to plan and support CME activities.
The department was also commended for utilizing several non-education strategies to enhance changes in its learners; identifying factors outside its control that impact patient outcomes in its CME planning process; identifying barriers to physician change; engaging in multiple collaborations with stakeholders; participating in quality improvement projects across the institution; and serving as a strategic asset for the health system and the university, positioning the organization to influence the scope and content of its activities and educational interventions.
For a full list of the ACCME’s accreditation criteria, click here.
To learn more about CME at the USA College of Medicine, visit http://www.usa-cme.com/.
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