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CME Policy Statement

Statement of Policy Regarding Planning of CME Activities, Disclosure, and Conflict Resolution

NACE is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. NACE operates in accordance with the ACCME Standards for Commercial Support. These standards are designed to ensure that continuing medical education (CME) activities are planned and designed independent of commercial support. It is NACE policy to ensure that all CME activities are balanced, independent, objective, and scientifically rigorous.

CME consists of educational activities which serve to maintain, develop, or increase the knowledge, skills, and professional performance and relationships that a physician uses to provide services for patients, the public, or the profession. The content of CME is that body of knowledge and skills generally recognized and accepted by the profession as within the basic medical sciences, the discipline of clinical medicine, and the provision of health care to the public.

  1. NACE ensures that in design of a CME activity the following decisions are made free of the control of a commercial interest: identification of CME needs, determination of educational objectives, selection and presentation of content, selection of all persons and organizations that will be in a position to control the content of the CME, selection of educational methods, and evaluation of the activity.

  2. NACE publishes disclosure statements by individuals in a position to control CME content so that this information is available to learners prior to participating in the activity. NACE discloses the name of the individual, the name of the commercial interest, and the nature of the relationship the person has with each commercial interest.

  3. NACE notifies all planners of CME activities and faculty associated with a CME activity regarding these policies and the importance of safeguards against commercial bias are explained.

  4. NACE requires that everyone who is in a position to control the content of a CME activity disclose all relevant financial relationships with any commercial interest. Individuals who refuse to disclose relevant financial relationships are not permitted to be a member of the planning committee or faculty and cannot have control of, or responsibility for, the development, management, presentation, or evaluation of the CME activity. Financial disclosure information is used to determine if a conflict exists. If one does exist, NACE initiates a content validation process to resolve the conflict and advises learners of this information.

  5. The purpose of the content validation process is to ensure: 1) learning objectives are addressed, 2) that content has fair balance and is free of commercial bias, 3) that the scientific objectivity of studies mentioned in the materials or used as the basis for content is maintained, and 4) that content contains recommendations for patient care that are appropriate. Individual presentations or initial drafts of a conflicted faculty member's content are reviewed by a NACE medical consultant. If there are concerns identified by the content validation process, feedback may be requested from the course director or program chair, and if necessary, a separate expert peer review may be conducted. If concerns about content exist following the content validation process the faculty member must resolve identified conflicts prior to the CME activity..

  6. NACE requests that learners evaluate activities for the potential presence of bias.