What is the difference between Commercial Support and Exhibits?
Commercial support is financial support from an ineligible company in the form of a grant or in-kind contribution (equipment/goods). An ineligible company is one whose primary business is producing, marketing, selling, re-selling, or distributing healthcare products used by or on patients. Examples of ineligible companies are outlined on the ACCME Website.
Typically, grants are obtained through a competitive online application process with the ineligible company, and awarded as an unrestricted educational grant for independent medical education. Despite commercial support, the education must remain independent of the ineligible company and the support may not result in commercial bias or commercial influence in the education. The support does not establish a financial relationship between the ineligible company and planners, faculty, and others in control of content of the education.
Programs that obtain commercial support must obtain a Letter of Agreement signed by the company and UF CME.
Exhibits & Other Promotional Activities
Exhibits consist of company presence at the educational activity in exchange for a fee, and are separate and distinct from commercial support.
- Exhibits cannot be offered provisionally in exchange for commercial support, as they are separate and distinct. Program coordinators are encouraged to create and collect exhibit contracts from participating companies.
- Exhibitors should have equal access and opportunity to all exhibit fees. Different fee amounts may be set for distinct offerings (size of booth, location of booth, number of reps) and for organization type (ineligible company vs. non-profit), but all fee options must be made available to all exhibitors.
- Exhibits must be located in an area separate from the educational space/lecture hall.
- Exhibit reps may attend the educational portion of the meeting, but are strictly prohibited from partaking in any sales or marketing activities in the meeting space.
- Learner information (name and contact information) may not be shared with companies without the express permission of the attendees.
What is allowed vs. not-allowed?
|Exhibit Booth/Table||Logos on faculty disclosure or official acknowledgement of commercial support documents|
|Exhibitor acknowledgement sign outside of meeting room (logos permissible)||Logos on slides/USBs containing slides|
|Ad Inserts in Welcome Packet||Logos in meeting room|
|Logos listed on event website on dedicated exhibit page||Sponsored Food & Beverage|
|Logos on hotel keycards|
|Sponsored Charging Stations|
|Ads at non-accredited social events|
|*Logos on swag conditionally allowed – email your CME Contact for additional information|
Other Promotional Activities
Industry Supported Lectures (ISL’s) are sponsored educational content that is organized and hosted by an ineligible company in exchange for a fee. These Industry Supported Lectures must:
- Take place in a separate room than the CME Accredited Content OR the same room as the CME Accredited Content and contain a 30 minute buffer before and after the ISL
- Be indicated on the agenda as separate and independent from the CME Educational Content. (Must be designated as “Non-CME by Company Name” – example below)
All promotional activities must follow the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education’s (ACCME) Standard 5.
Programs offering exhibit opportunities should email their CME Contact for approvals prior to advertising any exhibit opportunities to ensure compliance.