Online Course

Fundamentals: Activity 4 Management of Medications for Adults with Rheumatic Disease


Expires Dec 10, 2020

Program Information

CME: 1.25

Fundamentals of Rheumatology offers ten individual activities that can increase knowledge, competence and performance in recognizing the signs and symptoms of common rheumatic diseases in patients.The learner will be able to apply this knowledge and competence to participate in the treatment and care of patients with these chronic conditions and many other rheumatic diseases.

 Includes the following:

  • Pre assessment and optional practice test
  • Video presentation
  • Post assessment and activity evaluation
  • AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ with a passing score of 70% or higher

Target Audience
The target audience is physicians, fellows-in-training, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, office staff, practice managers, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and medical and health professional students involved in the care of patients with rheumatic disease and anyone interested in rheumatology that may work in an academic or practice setting.

Learning Objectives
Upon completion of this activity, participants should be able to:

  • Compare and contrast the dosage, action, and adverse effects of medications prescribed to treat inflammatory/autoimmune diseases with those used for gout, osteoarthritis, and fibromyalgia
  • Describe clinical indications, dosage, action, and required monitoring for adults receiving treatment with a biologic or biosimilar drug

Registration Fees

Activity 4: Management of Medications for the Adult with Rheumatic Disease

  • Member: $75
  • Non-Member: $125

CME and MOC Information

Accreditation Statement
The American College of Rheumatology (ACR) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. 

Designation Statement
The ACR designates this online activity for a maximum of 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 

Health Professionals 
Participants may claim hours to receive a Certificate of Participation for an activity designated for AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.

Needs Assessment
With the current and expected workforce shortages, it is essential to provide pertinent and up to date education for physicians, health professionals, medical and health professional students and other clinicians regarding rheumatic diseases so that diagnosis and treatment occur early for best patient outcomes 1. Because of the complexity of rheumatic conditions, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, there is a need to provide education that is applicable to non-rheumatology providers as well as those who are new to rheumatology 2.

The ACR 2015 Workforce Study Report 3 identifies a critical shortage of rheumatologists and is expected to worsen as the population ages and number of persons with a rheumatic disease increases. Since most programs don’t address rheumatology training, our focus was to expand knowledge, skill sets and increase access to care for patients through assessing, managing and evaluating those with rheumatic diseases and understanding the importance of the health care team role which includes the rheumatologist. The Fundamentals of Rheumatology Course is designed to expand clinician’s knowledge and practical skills as providers in practice, academic training setting and primary care and to improve patient care through assessing, managing and evaluating those with rheumatic diseases. 

Because of the shortage of rheumatologists, new patients must wait far too long before they are seen by the rheumatologist to whom they have been referred by their primary care physician. For years, rheumatologists have provided one-on-one education for their office registered nurse. The office nurse learns more about the diagnosis and treatment of rheumatic diseases and they have become experts in their role. Support for the expanded education and role of nurses is strongly supported in The future of nursing: leading change, advancing health report commissioned by the Institute of Medicine 4. The Fundamentals of Rheumatology course will offer on demand 24/7 access to education formally offered by the rheumatologist in the office setting to individuals. This education format will educate more clinicians without having to take time away from clinic for live education conferences. As more clinicians employ physician extenders to increase their ability to meet the imbalance of more patients/fewer rheumatologists, the need for specialized education is apparent. The Fundamentals of Rheumatology series of activities provides a good foundation for beginning practitioners in the rheumatology clinic. 


  1. Deal CLHooker RHarrington TBirnbaum NHogan PBouchery E, et al. The United States rheumatology workforce: supply and demand, 2005–2025Arthritis Rheum2007; 56:7229.
  2. Hooker RSThe extension of rheumatology services with physician assistants and nurse practitionersBest Pract Res Clin Rheumatol 2008; 22:523–33.
  3. 2015 Workforce Study of Rheumatologist Specialists in the United States Report (pgs 4-5, 30). Accessed 5 Jan 2017.
  4. Institute of Medicine The future of nursing: leading change, advancing health. Washington DC, National Academies Press.

Faculty and Disclosures

ACR Disclosure Statement
The ACR is an independent, professional organization that does not endorse specific procedures or products of any pharmaceutical/biotech concern. Educational activities provided by the ACR must demonstrate balance, independence, and scientific rigor. All those in a position to control the content of an activity must disclose all relevant financial relationship(s) with commercial interest(s). For this educational activity, all conflicts of interest have been resolved through peer review and revisions to ensure independence, evidence base, fair balance, and absence of commercial bias.

Faculty participating in an ACR-sponsored activity must disclose to the editorial team and audience any financial or other relationship(s) including, but not limited to:

  1. Stock, stock options or bond holdings in a for-profit corporation or self-directed pension plan
  2. Research grants
  3. Employment (full or part-time)
  4. Ownership or partnership
  5. Consulting fees or other remuneration (payment)
  6. Non-remunerative positions of influence such as officer, board member, trustee or public spokesperson
  7. Receipt of royalties
  8. Speakers' bureau
  9. Other 

The faculty reported the following disclosures.

Karen L. Huisinga, MN, ARNP, FNP, VA Puget Sound HCS, Seattle WA - No relevant financial relationships to disclose

Scientific Editor
Geri B. Neuberger, RN, MN, EdD, Emerita Professor, University of Kansas, School of Nursing, Kansas City, KS - Novartis 9

Assistant Scientific Editor
Debra Bancroft Rizzo, MSN, FNP-BC, University of Michigan Health Systems, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Ann Arbor, MI - No relevant financial relationships to disclose


  • Sumar Gupta, MD - No relevant financial relationships to disclose
  • Carol B. Lindsley, MD - No relevant financial relationships nothing to disclose
  • Monica Richey, MSN, ANP-BC, GNP, BSN - No relevant financial relationships to disclose

Corporate Support

Educational grant support for this activity has been provided by AbbVie.

Contact Info / Inquiries

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