The National Fibromyalgia Association today announced that its FAME (Fibromyalgia Assessment, Management and Education) program has received continuing medical education (CME) accreditation from the American Academy of Family Physicians. The FAME project, a partnership launched in 2006 between California State University, Fullerton and the National Fibromyalgia Association (NFA), is one of the first web-based continuing medical education programs designed specifically for healthcare providers who treat people with fibromyalgia.
“Physician education is vital to successful diagnosis and treatment of fibromyalgia,” says Lynne Matallana, president and founder of the NFA. “The program will help to reduce health disparities and improve the delivery of care to people affected by this life-altering disorder.”
An estimated 10 million Americans suffer from fibromyalgia (FM), a chronic pain disorder characterized by widespread pain, general fatigue and sleep disturbances. Currently 50% of fibromyalgia patients remain undiagnosed at any time and a correct diagnosis may take as long as 5 to 8 years from the disease onset. Many healthcare providers also lack confidence in identifying fibromyalgia and are reluctant to diagnose patients with the condition, according to a recent NFA survey.
The FAME project will help to increase the number of trained healthcare providers available to treat and care for persons with FM. It consists of two programs divided into eight module presentations. The first three —Overview of Fibromyalgia, Comprehensive Assessment of FM and Overlapping Conditions, and Pharmacological Management —makeup the Core FM Program. The Supportive FM Program offers sections on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Exercise Training, Nutrition, Biofeedback Training and Therapeutic Yoga.
The educational program has also received accreditation for continuing education (CE) credits from the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, the California Board of Registered Nursing, The National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc., the California Physical Therapy Association and the National Board for Certified Counselors. Approval is pending from the Board of Certification, Inc.
Developed and implemented through a grant from UniHealth Foundation, the programs will be offered online free of charge through August 2009. The $300,000 grant is the first grant that the UniHealth Foundation has awarded for a project involving fibromyalgia. For information or to register for the CME/CE program, visit www.fibromyalgia-cme.com.
The National Fibromyalgia Association is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to develop and execute programs dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with fibromyalgia by increasing the awareness of the public, media, government and medical communities. The NFA publishes a quarterly magazine, Fibromyalgia AWARE and hosts an award-winning website at http://www.FMaware.org