Saturday, November 18, 2017
PA Licensure Requirements FAQs

Physicians are reminded that the AOA does not send POMA credit information.  If a physician receives credits from a source other than the POMA, they should forward their certificates and program information to the POMA Central Office.


The State Board of Osteopathic Medicine implemented CME requirements several years ago; therefore, with the exception of new patient safety requirements, osteopathic physicians have knowledge of their licensure requirements. However, for clarification purposes, the following are the most frequently asked questions.


What are the requirements for licensure?

The State Board of Osteopathic Medicine’s requirements are 100 CME credits for each licensure cycle.

  • 100 total credit hours of CME in the two-year license cycle; the present cycle runs from November 1, 2014, to October 31, 2016; is to include:
    • A minimum of 20 of the CME credit hours in Category 1A, AOA; and
    • 12 CME credit hours in the areas of patient safety or risk management (either Category 1 or Category 2).


Who will I need to report to in order to renew my license?

The State Board of Osteopathic Medicine (SBOM) is not requiring a report of CME at the time of license renewal. The license renewal form will contain an area for physicians to attest that they have completed the required hours. By attesting that the requirement is completed, a physician may be subject to a random audit by the SBOM. If audited, a physician will need to show evidence of the completion of the required credit hours. Failure to produce the requested evidence will result in a fine and possible suspension of license.


How do I know if a CME activity is patient safety or risk management?

A certificate from an approved course (AOA, ACCME, AAFP or AMA physician recognition award) or activity has to be presented to the SBOM.


Do the patient safety or risk management credit hours need to be in Category 1 or Category 2?

The patient safety or risk management credit hours can be in either Category 1 or Category 2.


If I have 12 Category 1A AOA CME credit hours in patient safety or risk management topics, may I count these for both the Category 1A AOA requirement and the patient safety/risk management requirement?

Yes. If any of the patient safety credit hours that a physician has earned are Category 1A AOA CME credit hours, they can be counted toward both the Category 1A AOA requirement and the patient safety/risk management requirement.


What is the difference between Category 1A AOA and Category 1B and 2 credit hours?

Category 1A AOA CME is defined by the American Osteopathic Association as those activities that have been approved by an AOA-accredited sponsor. You will know that it is Category 1A AOA because all of the promotional materials will contain a statement similar to the following:

“This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the AOA Council on Continuing Medical Education. The (sponsoring organization, such as the Pennsylvania Osteopathic Medical Association) is accredited by the Council on Continuing Medical Education to sponsor continuing medical education for physicians.

Your CME certificate will also state that the activity has been approved for Category 1A AOA CME credits.

Category 2 credit hours consist of CMEs sponsored by the ACCME, AAFP or AMA Physician Recognition Award. Category 2 credit hours may also be earned by reading authoritative medical literature.


How do I prove Category 1B, 2A and 2B credits if I am audited?

Category 1B, 2A and 2B credit hours must be documented in the form of a physician log or diary and/or forwarded to the American Osteopathic Association or the Pennsylvania Osteopathic Medical Association, if the physician is a member.


If osteopathic physicians in Pennsylvania have a question or problem regarding CMEs, they are encouraged to contact the POMA.

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