The School of Medicine falls under Wake Forest University, which is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Wake Forest University was last accredited by SACSCOC in 2016 and will undergo the fifth-year review in 2021. The University will undergo the full review in 2026. SACSCOC accreditation allows the University to award baccalaureate, masters and doctorate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Wake Forest University.
School of Medicine programs approved by SACSCOC are Academic Nursing, Medical Doctorate (MD), Physician Assistant (PA), and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Biomedical Sciences. For questions regarding academic accreditation for these programs, contact the Office of Education Institutional Effectiveness (OEIE).
The Nurse Anesthesia program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) 222 S. Prospect Avenue Suite 304, Park Ridge, IL 60068-4010 Phone: 847-692-7050. Following the last accreditation review in 2015, the program was granted full accreditation for 10 years. This maximum accreditation period is granted to few programs. Graduates of the program are awarded the Master of Science degree. The COA requires that on January 1, 2022 and thereafter, all students matriculating into an accredited program must be enrolled in a doctoral program. The program will request accreditation from the COA such that our current optional DNP degree will be awarded to all students enrolling in 2022.
The current accreditation standing attests to the success of the program organization. Students receive ample opportunities for clinical experience and consistently exceed the requirements for certification eligibility. Clinical training includes approximately 800 cases (25 percent more than minimum required) and 2,500 clinical hours (25 percent greater than minimum required), during the 24-month program.
For the class of 2018, 91% of graduates passed the national certification examination on the first attempt (the national average was 84%). Employment of graduates within the first six months of graduation was 100%, and the class attrition rate was 4 percent (one student in good standing voluntarily resigned). Graduates of the program perform well on the national certification examination. For the past 10 years, the certification examination first-time pass rate averages over 90 percent.
In addition to national accreditation, Wake Forest School of Medicine's Nurse Anesthesia Program has the distinct honor of being the first program in the United States and only the second in the world to be accredited by the International Federation of Nurse Anesthetists (IFNA). This means that the program complies with the IFNA's standards, which have been endorsed by the association's member organizations in 36 countries. The status was awarded following submission of a self-study by and an on-site visit by IFNA representatives.
The MD program is accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), the official accrediting organization for educational programs leading to the Doctor of Medicine degree in the United States and Canada. The process leading up to the LCME site visit involves a comprehensive data collection effort, an institutional self-study and an independent student analysis.
The LCME accreditation process provides an excellent opportunity for the members of the medical school community to deepen understanding of all aspects of the MD degree program and to implement quality improvements through a formal self-study process.
With the broad involvement of basic and clinical science faculty, administration, students, staff and alumni, the MD program identifies and addresses areas in need of improvement, highlights strengths and accomplishments, and builds upon the history of innovation and excellence in medical education to continue the tradition of full accreditation of the MD degree program.
An accreditation site visit by the LCME is a significant event in the life of any medical school and occurs every eight years. The MD program has been accredited since 1942, with the last full site visit in 2016. The MD Program will undergo its next LCME accreditation site visit during the 2023-2024 Academic Year.
The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) has granted Accreditation - Continued to the School of Medicine Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Wake Forest University. Continued accreditation is an accreditation status granted when a currently accredited program is in compliance with the ARC-PA Standards.
Continued Accreditation remains in effect until the program closes or withdraws from the accreditation process or until accreditation is withdrawn for failure to comply with the Standards. The approximate date for the next validation review of the program by the ARC-PA will be September 2022.
Continuing Medical Education Accreditation
The Northwest Area Health Education Center (NW AHEC) and the Office of Continuing Medical Education (OCME) work collaboratively as part of Wake Forest School of Medicine. The NW AHEC provides continuing education for a variety of health care professionals and is an approved continuing education provider for the following:
- North Carolina Nurses Association and an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation
Through our partnership with the NC AHEC, NW AHEC can provide additional credits. The NC AHEC is an approved provider for the following:
- Psychology Category A
The OCME through the Wake Forest University Health Sciences is an accredited provider of AMA PRA Category 1 Credit ™. The OCME provides continuing medical education for physicians. On July 21, 2017 this institution was awarded Accreditation with Commendation status from the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME). This is a six-year award. In addition, other health disciplines may be able to use the AMA credit for license renewal. For more details, please check with individual licensing boards.
Graduate Medical Education/Residencies and Fellowships Accreditation
The following residency and fellowship programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) by a voluntary process of evaluation and review based on published accreditation standards. ACGME accreditation provides assurance that a sponsoring institution or program meets the quality standards (Institutional and Program Requirements) of the specialty or subspecialty practice(s) for which it prepares its graduates. ACGME accreditation is overseen by a review committee made up of volunteer specialty experts from the field.
All programs and sponsoring institutions undergo a full accreditation site visit every 10 years following a comprehensive self-study process, during which programs review their aims and conduct an analysis of strengths, areas for improvement, external opportunities and threats. They then must formulate and document plans for improvement.