FP CME Requirements

During the 2014 legislative session, the South Carolina General Assembly made several important changes to the Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) managed by SC DHEC (also known as SCRIPTS). Governor Haley signed S. 840 into law on June 6, 2014. It made two important changes applicable to physicians:

  • physicians and other prescribers are now able to designate an “authorized delegate within their practice to access the PMP for them. (Previously, the law required prescribers to access the PMP themselves)
  • physicians are required to obtain two (2) continuing medical education credit hours related to the approved procedures of prescribing and monitoring controlled substances. (this applies to renewals in 2015)

According to the South Carolina Board of Medical Examiners:

  • To renew a permanent medical license by the June 30, 2015 deadline, permanently licensed physicians in South Carolina are required to certify completion of two (2) Category 1 CME hours in approved procedures of prescribing and monitoring controlled substances. This new CME requirement does NOT apply to (1) physicians who are renewing their licenses for the first time after receipt of permanent licensure, (2) reinstatement applicants or (3) physicians with a Limited License. However, this new requirement DOES apply to permanently licensed physicians who do not currently prescribe controlled substances.
  • As part of the 40 hours of CME that you must complete every two years in order to renew your license, you must now receive and certify completion of two (2) Category 1 CME hours in approved procedures of prescribing and monitoring controlled substances before your license will be renewed. These 2 required hours may be counted toward the required 30 hours you must receive in your specialty. The total hours required for CME compliance is still 40 hours, not 42. Offerings that fulfill this requirement include but are not limited to CME hours in controlled substance prescribing sponsored by the Federation of State Medical Boards, (e.g. “Responsible Opioid Prescribing, A Clinician’s Guide” by Scott M. Fishman, MD) the South Carolina Medical Association, other professional organizations with ACCME or CCME certified CME (e.g. AAFP, ACP), and any FDA-REMS (Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy) compliant CME courses.

Note: AAFP Prescribed credit is accepted by the American Medical Association as equivalent to AMA Category 1 Credit

2014 SCAFP Summer Break Away & Annual Assembly

The two hour course held on June 16, 2014 entitled “ER/LA Opioid REMS: Achieving Safe Use While Improving Patient Care” presented by Dr. Katherine Galluzzi, qualifies as fulfilling the 2 hour CME requirement for physicians relicensing in June 2015.

2015 SCAFP Summer Break Away & Annual Assembly

On June 7, 2015 a two hour course entitled “ER/LA Opioid REMS: Achieving Safe Use While Improving Patient Care” will be offered at the Embassy Suites @ Kingston Plantation in Myrtle Beach, SC to fulfill the 2 hour CME requirement for physicians relicensing by June 30, 2015. Registration will be available for this course only (2 hrs), all day CME (6.25) or the entire meeting.


Learners can access all this CO*RE ER/LA Opioid REMS: Achieving Safe Use While Improving Patient Care curriculum through a newly published iBook covering all six units of the FDA Blueprint and includes video clips, case studies, poll questions, specific drug information, tools and resources, plus links to valuable websites. Three (3) CME/CE credits are available upon completion of the evaluation and assessment. This iBook is made available to any interested reader via iBook library and iTunes library. No access to an iPad? Not a problem; you can download a PDF version of the iBook as well. Your won’t get to see the video clips or answer the poll questions, but you’ll get all the same content and educational information.

Instructions for Downloading:

iTunes Book – This iBook is available for free through iTunes Books. You will need an iTunes account as well as a free reader such as iBooks or Readmill. Link: Download from iTunes

Download Directly– Click on this link to download the iBook directly. Drag the file into your computer’s file management tool (or select “Add to Library” from the iTunes File menu). Then sync your device to your computer. You will need a free ebook reader, such as iBooks or Readmill to read it on your device. Both apps are free in the App store.

PDF Version – No access to an iPad? Not a problem, you can download a PDF version of the iBook. You’ll get the same educational information through static text. Click on this link below to download.

American Academy of Family Physicians’ members should inform sponsors and producers of continuing medical Education (CME) programs, [e.g. hospitals, medical schools, and other organizations], of the Academy’s CME requirements. If such organizations wish to have their courses and programs reviewed for approval by the Academy, they must follow the criteria, definition and rules of the Academy. Sponsors can obtain program application information at Accreditation Services at AAFP CME forms


General Requirements –

Each AAFP active and supporting member, to be eligible for reelection to membership, must complete 150 hours of approved continuing medical education (CME) every three years, of which a minimum of 25 must be obtained from group learning activities and a minimum of 75 must be prescribed credit.

It shall be responsibility of each individual member to report hours of CME activity.

Sources for Prescribed Credit

A CME activity may be approved for Prescribed credit hours if the program is intended primarily for physicians and has been planned/developed with input from an AAFP member who is classified as an Active or Life Member.

1. CME activities for which application has been made to the AAFP Commission on Continuing Medical Education and approved for AAFP Prescribed credit hours.

2. Extended training activity conducted in a teaching hospital which may be individually planned or mini-residency/fellowship programs for which no formal application has been made to the AAFP for CME credit and which are submitted to AAFP commission on continuing medical education as an individual request for consideration and determination of approval. Limit of 50 hours per year.

3. Mini-residency/fellowship programs designed for practicing physcians, and approved by the AAFP Commission on Continuing Medical Education. Limit of 50 hours per week with a maximum of 150 hours per year .

4. Enduring materials (defined as any educational materials which may be retained by the physician as part of the physician’s personal library) which have been approved by the AAFP Comission on continuing Medical Education. (For review for approval of Enduring Materials, see definitions and procedures offered in “Information and Rules Regarding Approcal of Enduring Materials – Instruction Sheet for Reprint 103.” Hour-for-Hour credit to be allowed as specified upon completion of each course or module

5. Teaching medical students, residents, physicians, physician assisteant students or nurse practitioner students. Maximum of 20 hours per year.

6.Original scientific or socioeconomic research pertaining to patient care, public or community health, published in a state or national “refereed” journal. Limit of 15 hours per paper, with a maximum of 45 hours per three-year-period.

Sources for Elective Credit

CME programs, outlined as follows, may be acceptable for Elective Credit . No AAFP member family medicine input is required for Elective Credit.

1. Presentation or publication at the National Academy, AAFP constituent chapter, or other medical society level of an original scientific or socioeconomic paper pertaining to medical care. Limit of 10 hours per paper, with a maximum of 30 hours per three-year period.

2. Preparation and presentation of a scientific medical exhibit at a meeting of the National AAFP or AAFP constituent chapter. Limit of 15 hours per three-year period.

3. Educational activities produced by an organization or institution accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to sponsor continuing medical education for physicians which have been designated as Category 1 credit for the AMA Physician’s Recognition Award and which have not been approved for AAFP Prescribed credit. (NOTE: See “Activities Not Eligible for Credit” for programs which do not qualify.)

4. Other medical educational experiences and programs as well as informal self-learning activities of an enduring nature that are not AAFP approved or produced by an ACCME accredited institution or organization (see Item I), but are of a nature of ENRICHMENT to the family physician. Limit of 25 hours per three-year period.

Activities Not Eligible for Credit

1. Activities which may be educational but which are considered part of a physician’s PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY are not eligible for CME credit hours. Such activities include time spent in patient record review, peer review, community/public educational activities, and service as a medical missionary.

2. Enduring materials for which the term of approval for CME credit has expired may not be claimed for CME credit hours.

3. Programs produced by proprietary entities such as pharmaceutical companies, medical device manufacturers, etc.