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For Planners

Welcome to the Planners section of our website. The OCME staff are committed to assisting you with the planning and implementation of the highest quality continuing education programs to meet the educational needs of your target audience. Please review the Activity Planning Guide, other documents and resources, and contact us when you are ready to get started or have any questions.


  • In the past the standard for quality CME was simply to impart knowledge.  That is no longer considered sufficient and the activity will not receive approval unless it is designed to improve competence (defined as knowledge with a strategy to utilize it), performance (the ability to demonstrate competence) and/or patient outcomes.
  • Therefore, the activity must be planned to address an identified professional practice gap (the difference between what the physician actual does and what the physician should do) and the educational needs that underlie the gaps.
  • The format of the activity should consider appropriate teaching and learning methods that will best achieve the learning objectives.
  • There must be an identified target audience and the educational content delivered must be directly related to what the intended audience actually does in their professional practice.
  • The activity must be evaluated to determine its effectiveness at closing the practice gap.
  • Planning must be independent of commercial influence.  All persons, including planning committee members and faculty presenters, who are in a position to control CME content must disclose all relevant financial relationships with a commercial interest.

Tools Used for Identification of Professional Practice Gaps: 

  1. National practice standards
  2. Maintenance of certification (e.g. core competencies)
  3. Need for practice improvement identified by:
    - Learners (e.g. by group survey or by request from individual practitioners)
    - Specialists often recognize areas of suboptimal practice among non-specialists 
    who manage patients in their area of specialization
    - Observed outcome trends
  4. Issues arising from departmental quality of care or patient safety monitoring
  5. Top areas of litigation
  6. Emerging research and technology of clinical relevance
  7. Policy, legal, or ethical considerations with implications for medical practice
  8. Practice management aspects which affect patient care