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ANCC Nursing Continuing Professional Development Program Adopts New Consensus Standards for Integrity and Independence


Zachary Levine

Keziah Proctor

SILVER SPRING, MD— The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Nursing Continuing Professional Development Program (NCPD) announced its endorsement and adoption of the new Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME®) Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education. The Standards are designed to ensure that accredited continuing education provides health care professionals with accurate, balanced, evidence-based information that supports safe and effective patient care.

“ANCC is proud to both endorse and adopt these important new standards,” said ANCC NCPD & Joint Accreditation Director Jennifer Graebe MSN, RN, NEA-BC, “aligning the key areas of content integrity standards across accreditors in the health care professions ensures that accredited continuing education is designed, implemented, and evaluated free from commercial bias and influence.”

The new Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education evolved from the Standards for Commercial Support: Standards to Ensure Independence in CME Activities℠, which were first adopted in 1992 and updated in 2004. The new Standards were developed through a two-year, inclusive process of dialogue and consensus-building with stakeholders. The goal was to streamline, clarify, and modernize the Standards, and ensure their continued relevance and effectiveness in the changing healthcare environment.

The newly evolved Standards reflect the values of the continuing education community and have been adopted by accrediting bodies representing multiple health professions. Independence from industry is the cornerstone of accredited continuing education. By achieving consensus on the Standards, these accrediting bodies in the health professions stand together, not only to continue to assure the delivery of high-quality learning experiences, but also to sustain the protection from industry bias and marketing that accreditation rules deliver:

  • Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME)
  • Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE)
  • American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)
  • Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry’s Council on Optometric Practitioner Education (ARBO/COPE)
  • Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education™

“This opportunity fosters acceptance and alignment of content integrity principles,” said Graebe. “Which in turn fosters an environment where accredited providers of continuing education in the healthcare professions can collaborate to deliver high-quality continuing professional development through streamlined processes.”

The ACCME has committed to providing the needed resources and support as the ANCC transitions to full adoption of these standards. All ANCC accredited and approved providers will be expected to fully implement these standards by July 1, 2022.


About the Nursing Continuing Professional Development Program

The ANCC Accreditation Program identifies organizations worldwide that demonstrate excellence in Nursing Continuing Professional Development (NCPD). Accredited organizations use evidence-based ANCC criteria to plan, implement and evaluate the highest quality NCPD activities. As a result, health ministries, nursing organizations, employers, and continuing education enterprises rely on ANCC accreditation to call forth advanced nursing practice and improved outcomes. Nurses can choose the highest caliber of education to meet certification or licensure requirements. Learn about benefits for your organization.

About the American Nurses Credentialing Center
American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), part of the ANA Enterprise, leads the profession to shape the future of nursing and health care. ANCC's internationally renowned credentialing programs certify and recognize individual nurses in specialty practice areas. ANCC recognizes healthcare organizations that promote nursing excellence and quality patient outcomes while providing safe, positive work environments. In addition, ANCC accredits healthcare organizations that provide and approve continuing nursing education and accredits transition-to-practice programs that prepare nurses for new practice roles. For more information about ANCC, visit us at visit us at and follow us on Twitter. ANCC is the only nurse credentialing organization to successfully achieve ISO 9001: 2015 certification. The ANA Enterprise is the family of organizations that is composed of the American Nurses Association (ANA), the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), and the American Nurses Foundation.

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