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American Osteopathic Association

Des Moines University is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) to sponsor continuing medical education (CME) for osteopathic physicians.

CME Reporting for Preceptors

  • For every week the preceptor receives 40 credit hours.
  • Credit is given once the preceptor completes the student evaluation. Within the evaluation there’s a question asking the preceptor to verify their time spent with the student.  If the student was with multiple physicians during the rotation, the preceptor completing the evaluation has the opportunity to identify those physicians.  Credit is calculated based on the information given on the evaluation.
  • To request a letter documenting your preceptors hours or if you have questions regarding your CME credits, contact the CME office directly at or 515-271-1596.

DO Preceptor – CME hours are reported to the AOA every six months.  The Des Moines University CME office will report the hours on the physicians behalf.  The hours for January – June are reported in July; July – December are reported in January.  It will then take up to four weeks for the hours to show on the AOA transcript.

MD Preceptor – CME hours are eligible for AMA PRA Category 2 hours.  These hours are self-reported by the physician to the AMA.

State of Iowa General Requirement For Renewal of a Permanent License

40 hours of Category 1 activity are required for a two-year license renewal.  This may include up to 20 hours of Category 1 activity carried over from the previous license period.  The number of required Category 1 hours is pro-rated for anyone who holds a permanent license that was issued for less than two full years.

  • A physician who certifies or re-certifies with an ABMS or AOA specialty board during the licensing period may claim 50 Category 1 activity hours.
  • A resident or fellows may claim 50 Category 1 activity hours for participation in an approved residency or fellowship training program within the licensing period.
  • Activities designated as formal cognates by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists or as prescribed credit by the American Academy of Family Physicians are accepted as equivalent to Category 1 activities

Maintenance of license requirements

The requirement for membership in the American Osteopathic Association is 120 CME hours. Of this total, 30 CME credits must be obtained in Category 1-A, and the remaining 90 credits may be satisfied with either Category 1-A, 1-B, 2-A or 2-B credits. Physicians entering the program in mid cycle will have their credit requirements prorated. Your individual CME activity report outlines your total CME requirement and the amount of credits required in categories 1 and 2.

Members who obtain 150 credits or more of AOA approved applicable CME credit in a three-year CME cycle will be given a certificate of excellence in CME. These hours must be earned by December 31, but reported no later than May 31 of the current CME cycle.

In recognition that members of the AOA who hold specialty or subspecialty certificates in those specialties with less than 250 certificate holders may have difficulty accruing the necessary AOA 1-A credits required for membership, and to allow adequate time for the development of such programs, such members may apply ACCME or AAFP Category 1 credits to their AOA 1-A credit requirement up to the maximum credits per cycle as per the following table:

CME cycle ACCME category 1 credits AOA category 1-A credits Total credits
2007-2009 20 credits 10 credits 30 credits
2010-2012 15 credits 15 credits 30 credits
2013-2015 10 credits 20 credits 30 credits
2016 – onward 0 credits 30 credits 30 credits

AOA categories and types of CME credits awarded

For a complete list of the category types,  click here.

Category 1-A or 1-B credit must meet the following standards:

At least 50% of the presenters are osteopathic physicians; or MD’s, PhD’s, and other professionals with graduate degrees who hold a full-time paid faculty appointment at a college of osteopathic medicine; or AOA staff or AOA component society who hold a graduate degree and clinical COM faculty or OGME core faculty.


At least 50% of the presenters are osteopathic physicians; or MD’s, PhD’s, and other professionals with graduate degrees who hold a full-time paid faculty appointment at a college of osteopathic medicine; or AOA staff or AOA component society who hold a graduate degree and clinical COM faculty or OGME core faculty.


  • Interactive Internet CME
  • Formal Education Programs
  • Osteopathic medical teaching (live lecture)
  • Standardized Federal Aviation Courses
  • Federal Programs
  • Grand Rounds
  • Judging Osteopathic Clinical Case Presentations and Research Poster Presentations
  • Bioterrorism Courses (8 credits per 3 year cycle)
  • Standardized Life Support Courses (8 credits per 3 year cycle)


  • Non-Interactive Internet CME
  • Publications, Inspections, Examinations, and Committee Meetings
  • Osteopathic Preceptoring
  • Certification Examination Credit
  • Activities in Non-AOA Accredited Institutions
  • Non-Osteopathic CME Programs
  • Journal Reading
  • Test Construction, Committee Work (Formal and Informal)

Category 2 credit must meet the following standards:


Category 2-A includes formal educational programs that are AMA accredited, AAFP approved, an internationally known sponsor acceptable to the CCME, or sponsored by AOA-accredited Category 1 CME Sponsors that do not meet the 1-A faculty/hours  requirement for Category 1-A credit.


Category 2-B credit also shall be awarded for: the preparation and presentation of scientific exhibits at a county, regional, state, or national professional meeting (ten credits per scientific exhibit); home study; reading medical journals; viewing non-osteopathic medical video and audio tapes and cassettes; journal type CME on the Internet; faculty development; physician administrative training; quality assessment programs; observations at medical centers; courses in medical economics; CME programs on the Internet; risk management programs that are administrative in nature; programs dealing with experimental and investigative areas of medical practice, and ABMS recertification examination or a certificate of added certification (fifteen credits). Five credits may be granted for reading medical textbooks. A copy of the home study form may be found at

Calculating continuing medical education credit

Continuing medical education credit is calculated by each half hour. Please keep this in mind as you are finalizing your agenda. Examples include:

30 minute presentation = 0.5 credits
45 minute presentation = 0.5 credits
60 minute presentation = 1.0 credits
75 minute presentation = 1.0 credits
90 minute presentation = 1.5 credits

A continuing education activity must be a minimum of 30 minutes in length. Sessions within an activity, however, may be of any length. A 15 minute break must be provided every four hours.

Credit may be variable.

Links and resources

The 2013-2015 CME Guide for Osteopathic Physicians was approved in October 2012 and will be effective beginning Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2015. View the guide for the most recent CME guidelines regarding the upcoming 2013-2015 CME cycle. Remember that all AOA members, other than those who are exempt, are required to participate in the CME program and meet specified CME requirements for the 2013-2015 CME cycle.