08-25-2011, 08:16 AM
I am hoping someone out there can help me out. I submitted for CME reimbursement to my employer: my membership fees for the AAO as well as my registration fee for the oral boards. He states these are not considered CME. When I asked him what he considers CME, he said taking a course. He said since I didn't take the oral boards yet, it is not CME. He said only after I pass them is it considered CME.
Is this correct? I know other people who were reimbursed for these fees from their employer.
08-25-2011, 09:07 AM
Well it depends what is stated in your contract.
I have a section in my contract entitled "Continuing Medical Education" with a designated annual amount and description of activities that are CME related, such as professional society dues, subscriptions, books, CME courses (e.g. AAO or ASCRS meeting) that covers tuition, travel, etc.
And there is a separate section for "Professional Fees" that covers the cost of medical licensing, state controlled substance registration fees, etc. So these things are covered by the practice and not taken out of my CME funds.
Technically, registration for the ABO boards doesn't quite fit in with the above sections. But a course like Osler for the ABO Oral Boards which you can obtain AMA Category I credits would count as CME related. With the above, my AAO annual dues taken out of my CME funding.
Hope this clarifies things.
08-25-2011, 09:27 AM
Thanks for your reply.
My contract just states "CME" but does not spell anything out.
Does this mean he doesn't have to pay it?
08-26-2011, 05:46 AM
Those are not CME. It is strange the employer does not want to pay as I am sure he wants you board certified and a member of the AAO. My contract states membership in AAO, state society and AGS are included. Nothing about boards, but my employer paid for my ORR no questions asked as they want me to maintain by board cert.
08-26-2011, 11:41 AM
I agree that AAO membership and oral boards registration are not considered CME. However, I would think that most practices would pay for both under the professional dues/licensure/fees part of your contract. It is unfortunate if it is not stated in your contract. But, I would be more concerned about a practice objecting to paying for these professional fees - talk about not cultivating the young associates (how are they treating you otherwise?)
08-27-2011, 12:06 PM
I would agree that board registration fees and professional society membership fees are not CME. You don't get CME credit for those. If you're attending an AAO meeting, then the meeting registration would count, as should travel expenses, because that is something you can claim CME credit for. I have separate wording in my contract that covers boards and membership fees for selected organizations, like AAO. I have an annual CME allowance that usually covers one meeting.