Internet Activity, Enduring Material

Internet-Based Enduring Materials are online/electronic activities that may be used over time at various locations, and that in themselves constitute a structured CME activity. It is "enduring," meaning that the CME activity doesn't have a specific time or location designated for participation. Rather, the learner determines where and when to complete the activity. (Example: On-line interactive educational module, recorded presentation, podcast).

In addition to the application requirements, Internet-based enduring material activities must adhere to the following requirements:

  • Activity Location: CME activities may not take place on a commercial entity’s (e.g., pharmaceutical company, medical device manufacturer) website.
  • Links to Commercial Websites: With clear notification that the learner is leaving the educational website, links from the educational website to a commercial entity’s website is permitted before or after the educational content of a CME activity, but shall not be embedded in the educational content of a CME activity.
  • Transmission of Information: All required information, including that which is part of the standard flyer, must be transmitted to the learning prior to the learning beginning the CME activity.
  • Advertisement: Advertising of any type is prohibited within the educational content of CME activities on the Internet. Prohibited advertising includes, but is not limited to, banner ads, subliminal ads, and pop-up window ads. For computer based CME activities, advertisements and promotional materials may not be visible on the screen at the same time as the CME content and may not be interleafed between computer windows or screens of the CME content.
  • Hardware and Software Requirements: At the start of each Internet CME activity, the program must indicate the hardware and software required for the learner to participate.
  • Contact Information: The program must enable participants to contact the program with any questions about the Internet CME activity.
  • Policy on Privacy and Confidentiality: The program must have, adhere to, and inform participants about its policy on privacy and confidentiality that relates to Internet CME activities.
  • Copyright: The program must have documentation that it owns the copyright or has the permission to use copyrighted materials that are part of an Internet CME activity.

Enduring Materials

Prior to starting the educational activity, participants must be aware of the following information:

  • The principal faculty and their credentials,
  • the medium or combination of medium used,
  • the method of physician participation in the learning process,
  • the estimated time to complete the education activity,
  • the dates of original release of the material and any reviews or updates, and
  • the termination date (date after which enduring material is no longer certified for credit).

Programs must review the material for relevance and accuracy at least once every three years or more frequently if indicated by new scientific developments.

Effective July 1, 2011

In addition to providing clear instructions to the learner on how to successfully complete the activity, an enduring material must include:

  • An assessment of the learner that measures achievement of the educational purpose and/or objectives of the activity with an established minimum performance level; examples include, but are not limited to, a post-test, and/or application of new concepts in response to simulated problems.
  • Communication to the participant the minimum performance level that must be demonstrated in the assessment in order to successfully complete the activity.
  • Access to appropriate bibliographic sources to allow for further study.

Regarding Commercial Support

  • The material must not contain any product-specific advertising.
  • The program must acknowledge any commercial support, but only at the beginning of the program.
  • Acknowledgement of commercial support may include the name, mission, and areas of clinical involvement of the company or institution, and may include corporate logos and slogans, if they are not product promotional in nature.
  • No brand names or product-group messages may be used in the acknowledgement, even if they are not related to the topic of the enduring material.

Commercial interests (e.g., pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers) may not provide or distribute any enduring materials.

Programs must verify learner participation and evaluate any enduring material CME activity.