Graduate medical education

Single GME update: More AOA programs are applying for ACGME accreditation

Twenty months into the transition, AOA programs are gaining momentum in ACGME applications and accreditation, a new JAOA article reports.


With the ongoing transition to a single accreditation system for graduate medical education (GME) under the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), the number of AOA residency and internship programs moving through the ACGME process is picking up steam. As of February, 440 AOA programs have applied for accreditation since the transition began in July 2015; 146 of them have obtained initial accreditation, according to a new article in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association (JAOA).

When including AOA programs that have joined ACGME programs through an approved complement increase (i.e., when DO residents from an AOA program are added on to an existing ACGME program) and those that combined resources to submit a single application, 617, or half, of all AOA-accredited programs have applied for or obtained ACGME initial accreditation.

“The transition to a single accreditation system for GME is taking place over 5 years,” explains AOA president and lead author, Boyd R. Buser, DO. “We’ve seen a great deal of progress in the number of programs applying for ACGME accreditation, and we will see that number increase throughout 2017 and beyond.”

In their article, Dr. Buser and his coauthors also provide an update on osteopathic recognition and describe the policy changes that have taken place at both the ACGME and AOA to accommodate the single accreditation system.

For AOA-accredited programs that haven’t applied for ACGME accreditation yet, Dr. Buser encourages program directors to reach out to the AOA’s free Application Assistance Program.

“The assistance program has helped numerous applicants, ranging from providing a full independent review of the application to advising on a particular question of the application. And the service is available for osteopathic recognition applications as well,” Dr. Buser says.

Read the JAOA article to learn more.

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