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Welcome to CCMEPress
NC-CME's weekly newsletter from the National Commission for Certification of CME Professionals published by and for the CME/CE/IME community

A Glimpse of Sunshine
In an effort to summarize the portions of the final rule of the Physician Payment Sunshine Act, effective August 1, 2013, that impact most of us as CCMEPs, below is a glimpse of Sunshine as it pertains to CME:
Who does the reporting? Applicable manufacturers. CMS defines "applicable manufacturers" as manufacturers of drugs, devices, biologics or medical supplies covered by Medicare, Medicaid, or CHIP
What do they need to report? Certain payments or transfers of value to physicians or teaching hospitals. The list of teaching hospitals can be found here.
To whom is this information reported? Applicable manufacturers will be required to report annually to the Secretary of HHS certain payments or other transfers of value to physicians and teaching hospitals.
When is the first reporting timeframe? Applicable manufacturers must begin collecting data August 1, 2013. They must submit the first report period (8/1/13 – 12/31/13) by March 31, 2014.
If a physician payment or transfer of value is appropriate for reporting, what will be reported? Physician name, address, NPI number, and other identifying information all based on information in the National Plan and Provider Enumeration System (NPPES) database.
What about speaking that a physician does at a CME activity? Payments or other transfers of value provided as compensation for speaking at a continuing education program are not required to be reported. Conversely, unaccredited and non-certified education is reportable since this type of education program does not require the same safeguards as an accredited and certified program.
What about reporting for a physician attending an activity? Payments or other transfers of value associated with attendance of an event (such as travel and meals) must be reported.
Will food & drink need to be reported? Applicable manufacturers are not required to report or track buffet meals, snacks, soft drinks, or coffee made generally available to all participants of a conference or similar events where it is difficult to identify the identity of those who partook in the offering. Plated meals, or meals where an idea of the number of physicians partaking in the meal can be calculated, will be reported. Further clarification is needed especially in this area, as definitions of conference/gathering size and other details remain uncertain.
What about other items a physician may receive at a conference exhibit booth or similar? Small incidental items that are under $10 (such as pens and note pads) that are provided at large-scale conferences and similar large-scale events will be exempted from the reporting requirements.

See anything that needs corrected or further explanation? Email

To view the full Sunshine Act final rule, click here.


Volunteer Needed
The NC-CME is seeking a CCMEP volunteer to write our News Briefs/Press Releases. If you are interested in learning more, please contact Marilyn Peterson at
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NC-CME's CCMEP Testing Periods
June 13-30, 2013; Sept. 13-30, 2013; Dec. 1-31, 2013; March 13-31, 2014
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Become a CCMEP

Managing a CME program has become more complex and requires an understanding of wide ranging regulations, guidelines, and accreditation standards. Learn how to become a CCMEP to create value for yourself and your organization.

Quote of the Week

"The principle goal of education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have done - men who are creative, inventive and discoverers."
–Jean Piaget

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Educational Opportunities

Healthcare Reform and CE in the Health Professions
Providing brief descriptions of timely topics, their significance to continuing education, a call to action and references for further investigation, the ACEHP's "Focus On" series is a great learning resource. Click here to read more about "Healthcare Reform and CE in the Health Professions."
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Summer Institutes on Quality Improvement
July 9-13, 2013
San Antonio, TX
ACCME CME as a Bridge to Quality
Accreditation Workshop

July 31-Aug. 2, 2013
Chicago, IL
2013 Colorado Alliance for CME Conference
August 1-2, 2013
Vail, CO
ACEhp Medical Specialty Societies
Summer Meeting

August 7, 2013 – ASGE, Downers Grove, IL
August 13, 2013 – ACC, Washington, DC
AMEE 2013
August 24-28, 2013
Prague, Czech Republic
Independent Medical Education
and Grants

September 10-13, 2013
Philadelphia, PA
Twelfth National Quality

September 18-20, 2013
Washington, DC
ACEhp Fall Conference
October 15-18, 2013
Baltimore, MD

In the CME News and Beyond

Exploiting the Value of Electronic Health Records
By Mike Wokasch
With financial incentives provided to support the Afforable Care Act, physician offices, clinics and hospitals are gradually implementing electronic health records, and they will likely be a reality for most patients within the next couple of years. But even if every healthcare provider uses electronic health records, we will not be able to exploit the full potential of the available health information. Patient medical records will not be as portable as we might expect. So how does this get fixed?
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Choice of Health Plans to Vary Sharply From State to State
The New York Times
When a typical 40-year-old uninsured woman in Maine goes to the new state exchange to buy health insurance this fall, she may have just two companies to choose from: the one that already sells most individual policies in the state, and a complete unknown — a nonprofit start-up.
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Physician Pessimism Persists
"Physicians are working harder and longer hours for less reimbursement," said Richard L. Jackson, chairman and CEO of Jackson Healthcare, in a statement announcing the release of the staffing firm's latest report. "Plus, they feel like insurers, government and hospitals dictate how they can treat patients."
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House Bill Would Stop EHR Penalties for More Medical Practices
American Medical News
Lawmakers have introduced legislation that would require the federal government to offer more hardship exemptions to physicians to stop Medicare payment cuts for failing to meet electronic health records meaningful use standards. The House bill, introduced by Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., would create additional hardship exemptions for single-doctor practices and physicians approaching retirement.
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Report: Quality, Patient Say Will Have Bigger Role in Physician Compensation
Becker's Hospital Review
Last year, primary care physicians and specialists both said quality metrics began to affect their compensation, a trend both physicians and others in the industry expect will tick upward, according to MGMA's newest physician compensation and production survey.
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7 Predictions For the Future of Health Care Technology
Sean Mehra writes, "I've got an awesome job. Every day, I envision the future of health care and strategize how innovative technologies can transform how we give and receive care and, ultimately, make the world a happier and healthier place. Here are my seven predictions about where health care is headed."
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    New England Journal of Medicine Looks at Doctor Payment (Forbes)
Report: 36 Percent of Physicians Plan to Leave Medicine Within 10 Years (Becker's Hospital Review)
'Doc-In-A-Box' Centers on Rise for Urgent Care (The Philadelphia Inquirer)
Is Pay-for-Performance Right for Physicians? (Becker's Hospital Review)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.

NC-CME Weekly Update

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Tammy Gibson, Content Editor, 469.420.2677   
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Sarah Meadows, NC-CME Editor, 303.728.6550   
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