This tutorial is designed to teach accredited CME providers how to upload participant information into ACCME’s Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS) for activities registered for American Board of Internal Medicine’s (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program.
All CME providers accredited within the ACCME System already use PARS to enter data about each of their CME activities. CME providers can now also use PARS to register activities for ABIM’S MOC program by attesting to compliance with requirements for the ABIM Medical Knowledge Assessment Recognition Program. As part of registering activities in PARS for ABIM’s MOC program, providers agree to report participant data via PARS. For more information and resources, please visit CME that Counts for ABIM MOC.
STEP 1: ACCESS THE PARS PARTICIPANT MANAGEMENT INTERFACE
In order to begin reporting participants for the activities that you have registered for ABIM’s MOC program, you must first click on the Report Participants link at the bottom of the Home tab in PARS.
STEP 2: ENTER OR UPLOAD PARTICIPANTS
You have three options for reporting your participant data in PARS: you may either 1) enter the participant data for a specific activity via a web form, 2) upload the participant data using a batch upload, or 3) utilize the new ACCME PARS Web Service.
Using the PARS Web Form
- First, click on the Participant Summary tab.
- Next, use the drop-down box to select the reporting year for which you are going to report participant data.
- Once you see that the page is displaying the correct reporting year based on the header above the activity list (e.g. “2015 Participant Summary by Activity”), expand the list of activities that you have registered for ABIM’s MOC program by clicking on the blue bar that says ABIM.
- Click in the view detail link next to the activity for which you would like to report participant data.
- This will take you to the Activity Detail page. Click on the Add Participants button on this page.
- On the next screen, you will see blank fields that will you will use to input your data. Complete one line for each participant. To add a row, click on the + Add Participant button. To delete a record or an extra row, click on the red X button at the end of that row. NOTE: You can add up to 25 participants at one time. Once you have added 25 rows, you will need to submit your participants (see #7) and then repeat this step for the remaining participants. While you are welcome to use the Web Form entry for more than 25 participants, you may want to also consider one of the batch uploading options below.
- Once you have added all of the participants that should receive ABIM MOC points for the activity, click on the Submit Participants button at the bottom of the page.
The information that you enter will be validated with ABIM’s database. If your submission is successful, you will see a message stating the number of participant records that have been saved.
If any errors occurred during your submission, you will see an Error message at the bottom of the page like the one below. Correct the errors and try again. Please Note: The information in the screen shot below is only for the purposes of providing an example and is not reflective of any actual ABIM Board Certified physicians.
Batch Upload Options
- Click on the Upload Participants tab.
- Click on the link for the Tab-delimited method or the XML upload. This page also includes links to descriptions of each batch uploading method, instructions about the process, a template for the Tab-delimited format, and schema for the XML format.
- Click on the Choose File button and navigate to the file that you will be uploading.
- Click on the Upload & Validate File button.
If any errors occurred during the upload, you will see an Error Report message at the bottom of the page like the one below. Click on the Download Error Report link to see a list of the error(s). Correct the errors with your upload file and try again.
A web services is available to enable CME providers’ software applications, such as learning management systems, to submit activity and participant completion data directly to PARS. The goal of these services is to reduce the need for CME provider staff to use manual data entry or batch upload methods. To use these web services, your IT professionals will need to make modifications to your software. For more information please see the Technical Specs and Support section of the CME that Counts for ABIM MOC web page.
STEP 3: PARTICIPANT SEARCH
The last tab in the PARS Participant Management Interface is the Participant Search tab. You can use this tab to locate the participation records for either a specific ABIM Board Certified physician or for all the participants in a specific activity.
To search for a specific ABIM Board Certified physician, complete the Participant Last Name field and as much of the other information as possible and then click on the Search button. Do not complete the Activity Title field.
To search for all the participants in a specific activity, fill in the Activity Title field; you can also fill in the date range, if that information would be useful for you. Then click on the Search button. You do not need to complete the Participant Last Name or Participant ID field, unless you are searching for a specific ABIM Board Certified physician in a specific activity.
You must fill in at least the Participant Last Name field OR the Activity Title field to complete a search of the records that you have entered into PARS.