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July 2015 Single GME Accreditation System Update

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n July 1, 2015, the window opened for programs to submit applications for ACGME accreditation as they seek to transition to the single graduate medical education (GME) accreditation system. Since then, several programs and institutions have submitted applications for ACGME Initial Accreditation and for Osteopathic Recognition. Several institutions (16) have already received initial accreditation and both programs reviewed during the Internal Medicine Review Committee meeting in September also received initial accreditation.

This report highlights and summarizes recent updates on the transition: 

Osteopathic Accreditation

ONMM Focused Revisions: Comment Period Open
The ONMM Review Committee (ONMM RC) made proposed revisions to its requirements to create a pathway for AOA-approved Plus One programs to seek ACGME accreditation as ONMM programs. Those proposed revisions were posted on the ACGME website in May of 2015 for the required 45 day public review and comment period. The review committee (RC) reviewed the comments that were received from the community and felt strongly that further revisions to the requirements were needed. Additionally, they felt it was necessary to post the proposed revisions for a second public review and comment period to ensure that their revisions were more in line with the needs of the current AOA-approved NMM programs and the community as a whole.  

The proposed revisions to the ONMM requirements are now available on the ACGME Review and Comment web page. Along with the proposed revisions to the requirements, the RC has also posted the ONMM Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document with added FAQs addressing the proposed requirement revisions. 

The ONMM RC will accept formal comments through October 14, 2015. Formal comments may be provided utilizing the form found on the ACGME Review and Comment page. The completed forms should be e-mailed to onmm@acgme.org. The ONMM RC welcomes feedback from all members of the osteopathic community, but would like to particularly encourage all ONMM program directors and faculty members to provide formal feedback directly to the committee. Direct feedback is a valued and an important part of the requirement development and revision process.   

Solicitation for Public Member Nominees
Both the Osteopathic Principles Committee (OPC) and the ONMM RC are soliciting nominees for a non-physician public member to join their respective recognition/review committee.

ACGME Milestones Project & the Osteopathic Principles Milestones Webinar
Laura Edgar, EdD, Executive Director of Milestones Development at ACGME and Natasha Bray, DO, Chair of the Osteopathic Principles Milestones Committee held a webinar to provide information on the ACGME Milestones Project. In this webinar, held on August 20, 2015, 10-11:00am CT, speakers shared that seven osteopathic milestones for programs with osteopathic recognition have been developed and are now in the testing phase. A survey will be issued to dually-accredited and AOA programs shortly. The expectation is for the osteopathic milestones to be ready by the end of the year. Osteopathic milestones will begin to be collected in July 2016 and programs will be expected to complete both the osteopathic and specialty-specific milestones. The webinar recording is now available until November 20, 2015. Download slides here.

Traditional Rotating Internships Update

In an effort to ease the transition for DOs who completed a broad based clinical year in an AOA-approved program, several ACGME specialties that require a preliminary year will issue clarifying FAQs that provide leniency for programs considering such DO applicants. The RCs for Dermatology and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation already issued these FAQs. The FAQs will follow language similar to the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation FAQ posted recently:

Are individuals who completed a traditional rotating osteopathic internship in an AOA-approved program eligible to apply to ACGME-accredited physical medicine and rehabilitation programs? 

"The Review Committee understands that during the transition period to a single accreditation system, programs may wish to consider applicants from AOA-approved programs that are not yet pre-accredited or accredited by the ACGME. Core programs will not jeopardize their accreditation status if they accept such applicants. Applicants should check with the appropriate board regarding certification eligibility.”

Update on Institution and Program Applications as of September 30, 2015

At the Institutional RC (IRC) meeting held on August 21, 18 osteopathic institutions were reviewed, 10 received initial accreditation. To date, a total of 16 institutions have received initial accreditation, 21 remain in pre-accreditation status, and 8 are in continued pre-accreditation status. The next IRC meeting will be held on October 14-16, 2015. Below is a list of institutions that have received initial accreditation status:

  • Northside Hospital, FL Botsford Hospital, MI 
  • Lakeland Health, MI
  • McLaren Oakland, MI
  • Metro Health Hospital, MI
  • Magnolia Regional Health Center, MS
  • Midwestern University Osteopathic Postdoctoral Training Institute, AZ Lakeside Medical Center, FL
  • Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital, MI
  • Garden City Hospital, MI
  • MSUCOM Statewide Campus System, MI
  • Kansas City University of Medicine & Biosciences-GME Consortium (KCU-GMEC), MO
  • Still OPTI, MO
  • Campbell University Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine, NC
  • Western Reserve Hospital, OH
  • Memorial Health System, OH

A total of 50 programs have applied for initial accreditation as of September 30. Forty eight programs are in pre-accreditation status. Two programs in internal medicine received initial accreditation on September 18, 2015 when the Internal Medicine Review Committee met. The programs in pre-accreditation status are in the following specialties:

  • Emergency medicine (8)
  • Surgery (8)
  • Internal medicine (7)
  • Family medicine (6)
  • Diagnostic radiology (4)
  • Urology (4) 
  • Otolaryngology (3)
  • Orthopaedic surgery (3)
  • Neurological surgery (1)
  • Dermatology (1)
  • Ophthalmology (1)
  • Pediatrics (1)
  • Hospice and palliative medicine (1)

To date, 18 programs have applied for osteopathic recognition. Of these, two programs are in pre-accreditation status while the remaining are mostly dually-accredited programs and a few are ACGME-accredited programs only.

Education & Communication

ACGME Updates Resources for Single Graduate Medical Education (GME) Accreditation System
The ACGME has updated the Single GME Accreditation System section on its website (also accessible via the homepage). This section was reorganized to provide greater ease of access to news items, important updates, and critical resources to osteopathic programs pursuing application for ACGME accreditation.

The General Topics and Specialty-Specific Presentations and Webinars are listed on the ACGME website. Several slide decks have been updated to reflect changes since the delivery of the original presentation; additionally, the dates of availability of the recorded presentations are noted. After the three-month period of recording availability concludes for these webinars, the slide decks will be maintained indefinitely so that any future updates to the subject matter can be applied and incorporated into the presentations (note: these are also linked under the “Presentations” section on each specialty Review Committee web page, as applicable).


ACGME Annual Educational Conference

The ACGME will host a pre-conference for osteopathic programs and institutions on Thursday, February 25, 2016. The agenda is now available for review here. The day-long session is intended for osteopathic program directors, DMEs, Chief Academic Officers, and others interested in learning about ACGME accreditation for current AOA-approved programs.

Information will be provided for novices as well as those in transition, including tips on completing applications, the Accreditation Data System (ADS) system, site visits and data on applications received. There will be breakout sessions allowing program directors and others to sit with ACGME RC executive directors and ask questions. Although scheduled concurrently with this pre-conference, the DIO pre-conferences are also recommended for osteopathic institutions leaders.


Resource for Transition Updates: ACGME’s ADS Public Site

ACGME’s Accreditation Data System (ADS) public site now includes reports tailored specifically to track progress of institutions and programs in the transition. The reports include:

Article in The DO “New Standards Protect Residents During Transition”
In a recent article in The DO magazine, AOA staff explains new standards approved during the AOA Board of Trustees meeting in July, that seek to protect residents during the transition. View the article here.

For more information and educational resources on the transition, visit AACOM’s single GME web page. For questions related to the single GME accreditation system or this update, email singlegme@aacom.org