The MedBiquitous Consortium is launching a new project called MEMS 2.0 that it hopes will offer a streamlined, efficient, and effective system for collecting data about continuing healthcare education provided in accordance with the FDA’s extended-release and long-acting opioid analgesics Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy, known as ER/LA REMS.

At the core of ER/LA REMS is a requirement to educate ER/LA opioid analgesics prescribers on how to safely and effectively prescribe the drugs, and counsel patients and caregivers on their safe use. Accreditors already collect data about CE activities, and the group’s Medical Education Metrics Standard 1.0, ANSI/MEDBIQ ME.10.1-2009, already allows organizations to digitally compile CE data across multiple systems. The MedBiquitous Metrics Working Group is revising the standard to meet the specific needs of the FDA’s ER/LA Opioid REMS with MEMS 2.0.

The goal, according to a press release, is to enable accreditors from across the health professions to integrate MEMS 2.0 into their existing data-collection processes so they can use their own systems to collect REMS CE activity data. The data then can be pooled in central systems the FDA and other stakeholders can use to analyze the reach and impact of the nation’s accredited CE efforts in support of the FDA’s REMS initiative. The project is funded by the REMS Program Companies, a consortium of ER/LA opioid analgesics companies.

Several accreditors, including the Accreditation Council for CME, the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education,the American Osteopathic Association, the Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry, and the American Academy of Physician Assistants, have already jumped on the MEMS 2.0 bandwagon. According to the ACCME’s chief executive Murray Kopelow, MD, “MEMS 2.0 will give continuing health care education accreditors a common format for our REMS-related data, enabling the FDA, the continuing health care education community, and other stakeholders to assess the overall scope of REMS-related education for health professionals.” Adds AOA President Ray E. Stowers, “The opportunities presented by being a part of this effort will only bring forth better quality educational programs. Having the AOA at the forefront of this mission is a challenge we relish.”

The Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions also issued a statement of support, saying, “From the time the draft FDA blueprint was released in 2011, the Alliance recommended that a centralized registry regarding REMS education and performance improvement be developed to allow the comparison of aggregate data by different providers.” It adds, “The Alliance applauds the efforts of Medbiquitous and the collaborating accrediting organizations. CE providers planning to seek RPC grants are strongly encouraged to employ the MEMS 2.0 standards as soon as they are available.”

The MedBiquitous Metrics Working Group, which began revising the standard in August, welcomes other MedBiquitous members to join its efforts, and all “materially affected parties” also are invited to participate through the MedBiquitous Standards Committee. Visit the MedBiquitous Web site to learn more.

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