Tumor boards are meetings in which cases of cancer or possible cancer are discussed by groups of physicians who may represent several specialties. In the case of possible breast cancer, mammograms may be reviewed during the discussion but the bulk of the time may be spent in discussing other issues such as follow-up actions.
May interpreting physicians count their tumor board attendance time towards meeting the MQSA continuing medical education requirements? If so, how much credit should be given?
The first consideration is that the tumor board have category I status. 21 C.F.R. 900.2(g). In that case, FDA will accept any time at tumor boards devoted to the discussion of any aspect of a case of breast cancer or possible breast cancer or any other abnormal condition of the breast as counting towards meeting the continuing medical education requirement for the for interpreting physicians under MQSA. Documentation needs to be provided from the director/chairperson/organizer of the boards instead of from the interpreting physician him or herself. Tumor boards also consider other cancer cases as well and time spent on those would not count towards the MQSA requirements. When calculating the amount of credit that should be given, the following example may be used as guidance: If an interpreting physician attended 20 hours of tumor board meetings and an estimated 20 per cent of those 20 hours was spent on breast related cases, the interpreting physician may be credited with the equivalent of 4 CME towards the continuing requirement.