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November 2016 Single GME Accreditation System Update

November 23, 2016
Published by the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine November 2016

SAS in Brief

In this issue: Events  |  Key Updates  |  Applications  |  For Students  |  Resources

Top 9 Things DO Students Need to Know about the Transition to a Single GME Accreditation System


he five-year phase-in period for the single graduate medical education (GME) accreditation system (SAS) is now entering its second year. The system is expected to: ensure a consistent method of evaluating residents, expand training for both DO and MD trainees, build a stronger voice for GME, and perpetuate the distinctive elements of osteopathic medical education (OME).

As the 2017 residency match cycle begins, the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM) hosted a student webinar, “Navigating the Single GME Accreditation System”, on June 29, 2016, to equip students with timely information on the transition.

See the Top 9 Things DO students Need to Know.


Events and Deadlines

Joint AACOM & AODME 2017 Conference

The Joint AACOM & AODME 2017 Annual Conference will be held April 26-29, 2017, in Baltimore, MD at the Marriott Waterfront Hotel. Programming will include various aspects of the transition to the single GME accreditation system. For more visit AACOM’s Annual Conference web page.   

Osteopathic Medical Educators & Leaders Conference  

The 2017 Osteopathic Medical Educators and Leaders (OMEL) Conference will be held January 19-21, 2017, in Tampa, FL. View the agenda and register here. Details coming soon

2017 ACGME Annual Educational Conference

The 2017 ACGME Annual Educational Conference will be held March 9-12, 2017 in Orlando, FL. The ACGME will be conducting its annual osteopathic pre-conference in collaboration with the Association of Osteopathic Directors and Medical Educators (AODME). Sessions will include topics on achieving Initial Accreditation, Osteopathic Recognition (OR), scholarly activity, and a year in the life of a program director. The ACGME Review Committee (RC) Executive Directors will also be available to answer questions regarding the transition to ACGME accreditation. For more, visit the ACGME Annual Educational Conference web page.  


Key Updates

Get the Latest on Board Certification During Single GME Transition 

View this new chart, which summarizes the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) and the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) training eligibility requirements for specialty certification during the five-year transition period to SAS. The AOA provides a pathway for osteopathic physicians (whether AOA or ACGME trained) to sit for AOA board examinations in the areas for which it certifies. Learn about how the ABMS boards will offer certification to osteopathic physicians under specific circumstances during the transition, the rules for entering advanced ACGME training, and more.

Several ACGME RCs Incorporate AOA Board Pass Rates in Requirements

The following 18 ACGME RCs have now proposed focused revisions to incorporate AOA board pass rates within their program requirements. All relevant ACGME review committees are expected to submit focused revisions that incorporate AOA board pass rates within their program requirements. View the impact statements and program requirements posted on the ACGME’s Review & Comment web page and below:


Applications Update

Programs and institutions have continued to apply for ACGME accreditation since July 1, 2015, and April 1, 2015, respectively. The table below provides a brief snapshot of the current status of ACGME applications as of November 21, 2016.

Table 1. Status of SAS Applications as of November 21, 2016
  Institutional Sponsors Program Osteopathic Recognition
Total Applications 92 288 78
Total Initial Accreditation/Recognition 65 85 48
Total Initial Accreditation Contingent
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As of November 21, 2016, the ACGME Osteopathic Principles Committee (OPC) has approved a total of 48 programs for osteopathic recognition (OR), and 78 in total have applied for initial recognition. View the report of programs that have applied for OR (does not include those that were reviewed but did not receive initial recognition).

The OPC will reconvene on January 30 and 31, 2017. The next agenda closing date for applications for OR is January 1, 2017, for the March 31 - April 1, 2017 meeting date.

Osteopathic Recognition

Of the 48 programs with Initial Osteopathic Recognition:

  • 3 are AOA-accredited
  • 11 are ACGME-accredited only
  • 34 are Dually-accredited

Of the 24 still in the application stage for Osteopathic Recognition:

  • 12 are AOA-accredited
  • 7 are ACGME-accredited
  • 5 are Dually-accredited

View the full list of programs, institutions, and OR applications in the ACGME Accreditation Data System (ADS) reports below:

ONMM RC Approves Two Additional ONMM Programs

The Osteopathic Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine (ONMM) Review Committee reviewed and approved two more programs during the ACGME meeting in Chicago on October 18, 2016, bringing the total number of specialty programs in ONMM that have achieved initial accreditation to three.


Especially For Students

SAS Student Central

AACOM’s SAS Student Central page features resources especially for students on the transition to the single accreditation system. New updates are posted regularly on this page and are shared via social media, follow @AACOMmunities and the hashtag #singlegme to keep up with the latest. Recent updates include:



Osteopathic Recognition Milestones Webinar

AACOM, in partnership with the Association of Osteopathic Directors and Medical Educators (AODME), hosted a webinar on the ACGME Osteopathic Recognition Milestone Project on August 17, 2016. The webinar featured Natasha Bray, DO, ACGME, Chair, Osteopathic Principles Milestones Committee, Associate Dean of Clinical Medicine at Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine (ARCOM), and Laura Edgar, EdD, ACGME, Executive Director, Milestones Development. This webinar covered general information about the ACGME milestones and the evaluation process, OR, assessment mapping, and the clinical competency committee. View the webinar recording and slides.

AODME Webinars

Navigating the Osteopathic Recognition Application
August 17, 2016
This webinar, led by Sarah James, DO, Associate Osteopathic Program Director, University of Wisconsin Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, Madison, Wisconsin, provides a guide through the OR application, focusing on some of the more challenging components. View the webinar.

Osteopathic Research: A How To Guide, Part 1 of 2
September 7, 2016
Gain perspective on the need for evidence in the osteopathic medical field, and receive tools to help make this happen. In part one of this webinar series, Kimberly Wolf, DO, Co-Program Director of Dual Pediatrics Residency Program and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Nationwide Children’s Hospital/Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, provides an introduction to osteopathic research, covers the current state of osteopathic research, and reviews the need for a stronger osteopathic physician presence in creating the evidence that shapes our policies and patient care. View the webinar

Osteopathic Research: A How To Guide, Part 2 of 2
September 14, 2016
In part two of this two-part series on osteopathic research, Dr. Wolf delves deeper into how to successfully complete an osteopathic research project, funding for research, helpful resources, and more. View the webinar.

AOA Board Certification/The Match: Fact vs. Rumor
November 7, 2016
Boyd R. Buser, DO, 120th President of the AOA, discusses recent updates on the single accreditation system (SAS) transition and how it will impact the Match and board certification in relation to osteopathic medical students. This webinar features a video showcasing the desire of DO students to stay connected to the osteopathic approach after medical school, through residency, and beyond. View the webinar.

Osteopathic Recognition: Understanding the Application and Common Pitfalls
November 17, 2016
Tiffany Moss, MBA, Executive Director of Osteopathic Accreditation at the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), reviews the OR application process, provides recent updates and proposed changes to the application, and shares her experience with avoiding common recognition citations. View the webinar


Follow #singleGME on twitter for up-to-the-minute news on the transition. See AACOM's Single GME Accreditation System for more SAS information and resources.