On Wednesday, January 18, 2017, the College of Family Physicians of Canada’s (CFPC’s) National Committee on Continuing Professional Development (NCCPD) approved the continued delivery of continuing professional development (CPD) activities certified for two and three credits per hour outside of Canada.
When considering the approval of these higher-value credit activities for delivery outside of Canada, the NCCPD reviewed the existing standards and guidelines for program approval and considered the public perception of where and how physicians access education to maintain their competence. The CFPC’s Mainpro+® guidelines include standards to ensure the quality and integrity of CPD activities for family physicians in Canada. The NCCPD is satisfied with the College’s current high standards and confirmed that the geographic location of learning should not impact the quality of education.
The CFPC’s program review process includes a rigorous ethical review for all activities receiving financial or in-kind support through sponsorship from for-profit organizations. The ethical review process ensures that the focus of Mainpro+ certified CPD programs remains on addressing the educational needs of family physicians and not on ancillary factors such as meals, entertainment, and social activities.
Under these guidelines for activities delivered outside of Canada, programs must adhere to the College’s existing reciprocity agreement with the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). This agreement states that CPD programs delivered within the United States must be reviewed and approved by the AAFP if the primary target audience for the program is American family physicians. If the programs delivered in the United States are targeted at Canadian family physicians, then the usual review and approval by the CFPC is completely appropriate to maintain the College’s ongoing commitment to CPD programs of the highest quality.
Any questions regarding this issue may be directed to Jessica Black, Certification Manager, CPD at firstname.lastname@example.org or 905-629-0900 extension 396.
Jamie Meuser, MD, CCFP, FCFP
Executive Director, Professional Development and Practice Support
College of Family Physicians of Canada