About Us

TEAM will include an array of educational approaches designed from a competency-based framework to meet the needs of healthcare professionals caring for patients with atrial fibrillation needing anticoagulation therapy.

Our educational approaches will include:

  • Educational sessions at American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association international meetings
  • Regional education delivered through partners in primary care
  • Performance improvement projects developed for multiple specialties and practice settings
  • Internet-based enduring materials
  • Tools including videos, handouts, and treatment algorithms

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American College of Cardiology Foundation

The American College of Cardiology (ACC), a 40,000-member nonprofit professional medical specialty society, is the leading organization dedicated to fostering optimal cardiovascular care and disease prevention through professional education, dissemination of research, leadership in the development of standards and guidelines, and formulation of healthcare policy. The ACC’s ACCME-accredited provider unit is the American College of Cardiology Foundation (ACCF). The mission of the ACCF is to advocate for quality cardiovascular care – through education, research dissemination, development and application of standards and guidelines – and to influence healthcare policy.

The content of ACCF’s education activities is determined through continuous assessment of needs as derived from scientific advances in the field of cardiovascular medicine, clinical outcomes data to evaluate current practice, standards defined by practice guidelines and expert consensus statements, and perception of need by ACCF’s scientific experts and intended audiences. The scope of topics is broad and comprehensive, including information on basic science, clinical practice, practice management, socioeconomic considerations, and ethics. The individual activities encompassed by this scope are determined by member committees comprising experts as well as practicing cardiologists in the field of cardiovascular medicine.

ACCF’s primary target audiences are its practicing physician members and other cardiovascular physicians worldwide, including adult and pediatric cardiovascular physicians and surgeons. Secondary target audiences are other health professionals who provide care or service for patients with cardiovascular disease, such as primary care physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and nurses. Although the primary audiences reside within the United States, international participants are an important part of our future growth strategy, and enduring materials have been disseminated (in English as well as in foreign languages) to international physicians and other healthcare professionals.

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American Heart Association/American Stroke Association

The American Heart Association (AHA) is a national voluntary health agency supported by public contributions and the donated time of millions of volunteers dedicated to “building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.” AHA consists of eight affiliate offices across the country, with the National Center in Dallas, Texas.

The AHA is committed to: supporting research; educating physicians, nurses, other healthcare professionals; informing the public about risk factors; promoting healthier lifestyles; and developing educational programs for the community. The AHA Continuing Professional Education program passionately strives to be the most trusted learning and change agent for translating emerging science to best practice through continuous quality improvement.

The AHA set an impact goal to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke by 25% by 2010. The AHA is pleased to report that the goal related to coronary heart disease has been met. With new data from January 2008, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that since 1999, deaths from heart disease have dropped by 25.8%, with deaths from stroke falling by 24.4%. Much work is still to be done, especially as it relates to disparities of care.

The AHA’s primary areas of emphasis are:

  • Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors: High blood pressure, high cholesterol, tobacco, physical inactivity, poor nutrition, diabetes, and overweight/obesity
  • Science topics: Acute event, cardiac and respiratory arrest, stroke, Atrial Fibrillation, Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI), peripheral arterial disease, novel risk factors, congenital disease, global risk approach, heart failure, arrhythmias, and subclinical atherosclerosis

Scientific Sessions is the world Scientific Sessions is the AHA’s largest gathering of scientists and healthcare professionals devoted to the science of cardiovascular disease and stroke and the care of patients suffering from these diseases. Programming is designed to improve patient care by communicating the most timely and significant advances in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease from many different perspectives. Sessions provides comprehensive, unparalleled education through more than 4,000 presentations given by some of the world’s top leaders in the areas of cardiovascular disease. In 2010, total attendance was 24,682 and professional attendance was 17,468. Non-US professional attendance was 8,684. The International Stroke Conference is a 2½-day conference providing a forum in which to present recent scientific work related to cerebrovascular disease. More than 1,000 abstract presentations, lectures and debates will be featured. In 2011, professional attendance was 3,781 and total attendance was 4,561. Twenty-four percent of the professional attendance is non-US.

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California Academy of Family Physicians (CAFP)

The California Academy of Family Physicians (CAFP) was founded in 1948. Its mission is to advance the personal and professional development of family physicians, assist members throughout their careers with resources and support, analyze and disseminate trends and information to assist family physicians in their practices, and advocate for positions that promote the health of Californians and enhance the role and practice of family physicians collectively and individually.

The California Academy of Family Physicians is the largest primary care specialty organization in California and the largest chapter of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). CAFP is an ACCME-accredited provider, and works nationally with primary care and medical specialty organizations others to provide high quality, evidence- and outcomes-based education. Our organization has taken the lead in three major areas: continuing professional development and quality improvement, cultural and linguistic proficiency, and healthcare workforce reform in California. The three areas go hand-in-hand toward improving the healthcare and health status of our states’ and national population.

Our efforts in CPE/QI include national programming on a range of clinical and non-clinical topics, using multiple vehicles for needs assessment, curriculum development and implementation, and outcomes measurement. Our “New Directions in Diabetes Care,” is an innovative approach to melding clinical education and practice redesign for improvement of care of patients with diabetes. The core of this four-year project was the work done in three consecutive Institute of Healthcare Improvement learning collaboratives. This work has been recognized by The Physicians Foundation, The California Healthcare Foundation, and Wellpoint Foundation as an innovation in design and systems approaches to care. CAFP is also a member of the CS2Day smoking cessation initiative, with responsibility for live, PI and virtual community projects, plus financial and project management for the initiative, a member of the Innovations in Collaborative Education (ICE) partnership, and a lead partner in the Collaborative for REMS Education (CO*RE).

The CAFP is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education (CME) for physicians since 1994, and received accreditation with commendation in 2007.

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Forefront Collaborative

Forefront Collaborative (formerly CME Enterprise) is an ACCME-accredited organization that unites and mobilizes able hands, bright minds, and passionate hearts to move patient care forward through collaboration strategy and development, dynamic customized learning, applied educational research and design, and patient empowerment initiatives. Our team places great value on building and maintaining strong relationships with other healthcare-related groups in order to leverage pooled expertise and resources to create quality education that effectively addresses health priorities. Our particular experience and expertise includes:

  • Accreditation requirements and compliance
  • Partnerships and collaboration
  • Continuous assessment including needs assessment, gap analysis, and outcomes measurement
  • Educational/content design, development, editorial review, and validation
  • Multimedia production, including custom videos and interactive online deliverables
  • Advanced project management, including for highly complex, multicomponent initiatives
  • Budget development and monitoring

Forefront Collaborative has produced hundreds of CME activities in various formats for multiple therapeutic areas as the sole provider or in co-sponsorship or joint sponsorship with other accredited provider organizations. Our professional approach to project management and educational quality has been affirmed through a number of successful partnerships with nationally recognized universities, medical specialty societies and associations, and faculty in multiple specialty areas.  We participate in unique collaborations including AREA (Antimicrobial Resistance Education Alliance) and CS2day (Cease Smoking Today, a nine-partner multiyear initiative to decrease the number of persons who smoke through tailored educational offerings and resources ranging from conferences and print materials to television formats, hand-held tools, and performance improvement projects; CS2day received the 2009 Award for Collaboration in CME from the Alliance for CME and the National Association of Medical Education Companies’ award for Best Practice in Collaboration Among CME Stakeholders in 2010).

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Healthcare Performance Consulting, Inc.

Healthcare Performance Consulting, Inc. (HPC) develops and implements strategies to drive behavior change in clinicians, patients and others within healthcare systems in order to attain specific and measurable quality and cost outcomes for clients.

The core competency of HPC is its ability to assess the current behavior of clinicians, analyze forces and barriers behind that behavior, and develop strategic approaches that will change behavior where it is ethical and medically appropriate to do so. This is accomplished by taking a systems approach to changing behavior. The best current theories on physician learning and change emphasize the need to examine “readiness-tochange.” Change is always a process, and where clinicians are in that process has a bearing on the strategy used to produce the change. Thus, an assessment of readiness-to-change is often a part of the HPC process involving a combination of proprietary and public-domain tools and techniques. A key component of this process is to involve “the voice of the learner”, i.e., to gather information directly from the clinicians themselves using both qualitative and quantitative methods including in-depth interviews, focus groups and surveys.

HPC consultants assist with developing a strategy for changing behavior based on what is learned in the assessment process. This strategy may include a variety of educational, regulatory, and patient-mediated tactics. Outcomes of the change strategy may be assessed using the same tools used to assess needs, or with other tools developed specifically to assess the tactics employed.

HPC consultants each have over 25 years of experience in the healthcare system and have presented their expertise at national meetings of CME educators and researchers of physician behavior change. Projects have been completed with education providers, employers and managed care organizations where root causes of problems are identified and targeted for interventions. HPC experience and core competency include: strategy development, medical education, training and education, organizational development, management and quality improvement.

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Interstate Postgraduate Medical Association

Since its foundation in 1916, Interstate Postgraduate Medical Association of North America (IPMA) has continuously maintained its original goal of physician education that positively impacts patient care. As a notfor-profit 501(c)(3) educational association, IPMA’s stated mission is the dissemination of medical knowledge and the improvement of physicians’ ability to prevent, detect, and treat disease. A diverse array of educational activities and initiatives apply evidence-based adult learning strategies to transform practice, ultimately improving patient health.

Throughout its 94-year history, IPMA has been guided by some of medicine’s great teachers: William J. Mayo, MD; Charles H. Mayo, MD; Frank H. Lahey, MD; Charles W. Mayo, MD; Alton Ochsner, MD; Robert M. Zollinger, MD; Morris Fishbein, MD; and John L. Ochsner, MD. This tradition of excellence continues today in education that incorporates thorough needs assessment, quality faculty, relevant topics, and in-depth outcomes measurement, all targeted at improving physician performance and patient care.

A number of initiatives exemplify IPMA’s commitment to excellence in education. The Primary Care Update, IPMA’s annual international conference, targets identified educational needs of family physicians. National performance improvement initiatives are executed in collaboration with the AMA Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement Advisory Committee, the Iowa Foundation for Medical Care, and the American Academy of Family Physicians. In addition, IPMA is a member of CS2day Smoking Today (CS2day), an education partnership that was awarded ACME’s Award for Collaboration in CME in 2009. Finally, a series of comprehensive, in-depth needs assessments that detail the educational needs of healthcare providers in a number of clinical areas, including overactive bladder, nutrition, and chronic pain.

IPMA received accreditation with commendation from the ACCME in 2007.

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Physicians Institute for Excellence in Medicine

Physicians Institute for Excellence in Medicine (PIEM), a nonprofit subsidiary of the Medical Association of Georgia, has become a national leader in developing and managing collaborative educational projects that provide managed educational grants and projects to CME providers, with a focus on outcomes-based and performance improvement activities. The Physicians’ Institute currently has had collaborative relationships with 16 state medical societies and other organizations representing about 1,500 CME providers.

The overall aim of the PIEM Collaborative Model is to improve the quality and impact of local CME. These collaborations give the Physicians’ Institute tremendous reach into locally-provided CME based on locally identified professional practice gaps in community hospitals, health systems, and state chapters of specialty societies. If it is true that “all CME is local,” then this collaborative model is ideal for CME.

PIEM focuses on a unique model of pooled funding, the Collaborative Grants Model.™ This model features secondary grants to CME providers, integrated evaluation services, educational design consultation, project management, and aggregate outcome reports. Depending upon the project, standardized curriculum, monographs, video-based content including simulated patients, and audio-visual services may be provided.

To date, the Physicians’ Institute has developed and managed fifteen distinct Collaborative Grants initiatives which have included sixteen Collaborative organizations, representing 253 CME projects located in 21 states in the following clinical areas: Depression and Anxiety; Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Diabetes, Tobacco Cessation, COPD, Alzheimer’s and other Dementias, Chronic Pain, Pneumonia, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Low Back Pain, Stroke, Blood Management, and Sepsis. Aggregate reports and outcomes information are available for completed projects.

Recognizing the need for quality, in-depth training and education for healthcare providers and CME professionals, the Physicians’ Institute is also focusing on Process Improvement Training (PIT). The Physicians’ Institute’s PIT training modules include CME Outcomes, Performance Improvement, and Motivational Interviewing.

The Physicians’ Institute offers a Website that includes an online grants management system, educational videos, and related resources at www.physiciansinstitute.org.

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Telligen

Founded in 1971 as a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization, Telligen is nationally-recognized as a leading provider of Healthcare Quality improvement, care coordination, and medical information management. Telligen has served as a trusted government contractor for thirty-eight years, providing CMS, state Medicaid programs, and other clients with products and services to promote their healthcare agendas. It is headquartered in West Des Moines, Iowa, with offices in Illinois, Maryland, Oklahoma and Minnesota. With more than $75 million in annual revenues, Telligen provides services to millions of people nationwide, offering client- driven, flexible solutions. Its three major lines of business include: Healthcare Quality Programs, Information Management Services, and Care Management Programs. Telligen employs more than 700 staff members, including physicians, nurses, and health information technology specialists, programmers, biostatisticians and epidemiologists.

The company supports the delivery of Information Management, Care Management, and Quality Management services to its clients through several business units. To accommodate the breadth and scope of its product and service lines, Telligen has adopted an organization structure that supports specialization to ensure innovativeness and quality. Each business unit is specialized, but available as a resource to the others. Business units can build on focused areas of expertise, which is then made available to the larger organization. Telligen has operated a national CME program as part of the quality improvement activities under its Quality Improvement (QI) contract. The goal has been to develop a program that is more “action oriented” than traditional medical education programs—one that will lead to measurable improvements in patient care. The program was designed to help primary care physicians acquire the skills necessary to initiate and sustain a quality improvement program in their office practice. The topics addressed include the clinical evidence base for specified quality measures, quality improvement methodology, improvement cycles, measurements systems, and QI interventions and data analysis. This program awards CME credit based on physician implementation of a structured QI program in their office practice designed to improve clinical performance and patient outcomes. Credits are awarded when the participating physician completes a predefined set of quality improvement activities and produces documentation that all program requirements have been met. The primary teaching methods include an initial presentation of the clinical evidence base for the quality measures, distribution of QI support materials and other tools needed to launch and sustain a quality improvement project in the outpatient setting and QI “skill building” among participating physicians. To receive CME credits, each participating physician must complete the following activities: enroll in the program; make a change in a clinical care process or implement some other QI intervention designed to improve performance on one or more of the quality measures; implement an on-going measurement process to assess clinical performance for the specified quality measures; and periodically analyze the measurement results to evaluate the impact of the QI intervention on clinical performance and patient outcomes. Engaging in these activities not only earns CME credits, but also builds a quality improvement skill set for the participating physician that can be expanded to other clinical conditions or patient populations and help sustain a continuous improvement effort over time.

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University of Virginia School of Medicine—Office of Continuing Medical Education

The Office of Continuing Medical Education was established in 1974 and accredited by the American Medical Association later that year. Since that time, the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) has awarded the University of Virginia School of Medicine six-year accreditation terms from 1984 through our current accreditation ending in 2015.

The University of Virginia Office of Continuing Medical Education serves as an educational and strategic resource to the School of Medicine and the Health System through the dissemination of educational programming to practicing physicians in Virginia, throughout the United States and the world. As a leading ACCME accredited provider holding accreditation with commendation, the University of Virginia School of Medicine designs and creates clinically relevant and innovative educational interventions for physicians and healthcare professionals. The UVA Office of Continuing Medical Education anticipates that we need to continue to explore new and innovative ways to build an educational partnership with our constituent physician and healthcare professional audiences. We believe that the desire and need for CME programming will continue to require us to find strategies that are accessible, respond to clinically relevant issues in healthcare, and measure changes in physician practice behaviors over time. This new paradigm for CME builds on long-term relationships rather than sporadic interactions, requires new partnerships with departments/organizations interested in promoting improved standards of care, and a continued sensitivity to the dilemmas faced by physicians on a daily basis. We have more than 12 years of experience in the development of Web-based educational programming that started with Cardiovillage (www.cardiovillage.com) and has expanded to initiatives in breastfeeding, perinatal depression, cervical cancer screening, and dementia.

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University of Wisconsin, Office of Continuing Professional Development

The University of Wisconsin-Madison is one of the world’s premier public research universities and the School of Medicine and Public Health (UW-SMPH) is well known for its numerous excellent clinical programs and academic departments. For example, the school is ranked sixth in primary care by US News and World Report and is home to over 1,000 full-time faculty members. Importantly, the University of Wisconsin is also home to one of the premiere academic CME units in the country.

With nearly 30 employees, the University of Wisconsin, Office of Continuing Professional Development in Medicine and Public Health (UW-OCPD) has established itself as an innovative unit that embraces continuous quality improvement and a scholarly approach to its educational offerings. Indeed, UW-OCPD initiatives incorporate innovative educational formats, program development, adult education, organizational and systems thinking, and interventions that facilitate change in clinical practice and behavior. The unit is a pioneer in the development and implementation of PI initiatives that go well beyond the traditional approach to CME. Of note, the school is one of the very few providers with PI CME activities that have been approved by multiple certifying boards (eg, the American Board of Internal Medicine, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, and the American Board of Pediatrics) for Maintenance of Certification. In a typical year, the school’s CME program sponsors hundreds of activities that reach >30,000 learners. UW-OCPD has a proven track record of managing complex partnerships that focus on strategic CME initiatives.

In addition, the CME program is home to the President of the Alliance for CME (George Mejicano) and the editor of the Journal for Continuing Education in the Health Professions (Curt Olson). The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health will serve as the accredited provider for some activities proposed herein. For the activities it sponsors, responsibilities include control of content, approval of educational methods and materials, selection of faculty, direction of activity presenters, compliance with ACCME standards and all other regulatory guidelines, clinical content review, and identification and resolution of potential conflicts of interest.