On Friday, February 1, CMS announced the final regulations to implement the Sunshine Act. Listening to the majority of comments with respect to the CME industry, CMS exempted payments provided as compensation for speaking at a continuing education if certain conditions are met—which are consistent with the ACCME’s accreditation standards and standards for commercial support. The final rule is available here.
The CME Coalition released this press release applauding CMS decision.
We believe that this decision recognizes the adequacy of current protections against bias in CME, and acknowledges CME’s special role in educating physicians and improving patient outcomes. By limiting CME support payments from the reporting rules required of direct physician payments, CMS has made it clear that pharmaceutical companies, medical device manufacturers, and other commercial supporters should not be discouraged from underwriting accredited CME activities.