Recent changes and improvements to how joint-accredited providers work with JA PARS and CPE Monitor have left some providers confused. Although the big picture may be clear enough, the details of how the systems work together are often misunderstood.
Here are seven things to know about how JA PARS works with CPE Monitor and other boards.
1. JA PARS is the traffic controller for creating activities.
For those providers new to joint accreditation, JA PARS stands for “Joint Accreditation Program and Activity Reporting System.”
“Joint Accreditation,” fully known as Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education, has required providers to enter their continuing education activities in the JA PARS web portal from 2018 onward.
CPE Monitor is a collaborative service by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) and the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy to provide an online platform for pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to track their completed continuing pharmacy education credits.
For joint-accredited providers, JA PARS is the only place an activity will need to be created to enable reporting in CPE Monitor. When an activity for pharmacists or pharmacy technicians is created in JA PARS, it will also be created in CPE Monitor.
2. Learner credit records are not reported to JA PARS.
This is a common misunderstanding. With some exceptions, only participation counts are reported to JA PARS. See item No. 5 for more information.
3. Pharmacist and pharmacy technician participation counts are not sent to JA PARS from the provider.
JA PARS accepts participant counts for physician, nurses and others from the provider. Pharmacist and pharmacy technician are not accepted. This is because…
4. Pharmacist and pharmacy technician credits are still reported via CPE Monitor.
There has been no change in the way pharmacist and pharmacy technician credit is reported to CPE Monitor. Credit must be reported to CPE Monitor within 60 days of completing the activity. Once reported to CPE Monitor, participant counts are pulled into JA PARS in real-time.
5. MOC credits are reported to speciality boards through JA PARS.
The only credits that are currently reported to JA PARS are MOC credits for use by speciality boards. (However, do take note of the state medical board pilot). Participating boards allow JA PARS to provide an interface for reporting credits, reducing the workload for those providers reporting to multiple boards. Currently, JA PARS supports ABA, ABIM, ABO, ABOHNS, ABPath and ABP specialty boards. The supported boards are listed online.
6. Partial credit is now supported in CPE Monitor.
Partial credit is used when a participant attends only part of an accredited activity, for example, if a participant attends only 30 minutes of a 1-hour activity.
For non-joint-accredited providers, only full credit for an activity can be provided to pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. However, for joint-accredited providers, CPE Monitor will accept partial credit.
As an example, say a joint-accredited institution has a three-day course that will comprise 18 hours of instruction. The provider enters the course into JA PARS as one activity. For that course, each day has six separate sessions and each session is worth one hour of credit. If a learner only attends 12 sessions, the provider can report 12 credit hours for the learner.
However for non-joint-accredited providers, ACPE does not allow partial credit for a course. If the learner attends 12 sessions, the provider would only be able to report all 18 hours (but only if the requirements were met), or none.
To resolve this issue, CPE Monitor now provides a way to add, upload or transmit partial credit hours for joint-accredited providers. Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians can claim 12 credit hours for an joint-accredited activity with 18 total hours of credit and have those 12 hours reported to CPE Monitor.
Another option, for both joint and non-joint-accredited providers, would be to create multiple activity records — one for each session.
This feature was added in 2018 and CPE Monitor asks that providers contact firstname.lastname@example.org if further clarification is needed.
7. One chart to explain it all
In the diagram below, we’ve illustrated the workflows.