ECFMG 2023 Accreditation Requirement – Moved to 2024
With the immense globalisation in medicine as well as the rapid expansion of medical education providers the implementation of quality assurance practices as well as formalised accreditation processes is crucial. However, the sole existence of accreditation systems does not provide a guarantee that the system is working well and resulting in trustworthy decisions on the quality of programmes in medical education.
As such, the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME), through its Recognition Programme, aims to ensure that accreditation of medical schools worldwide is at an internationally accepted and high standard through an independent, transparent, and rigorous method of recognition of accrediting agencies around the world.  Up to date, 21 accrediting agencies have received WFME recognition, and 13 more are in progress
An important stimulus to the WFME Recognition of Accreditation Programme is the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG®) 2023 Accreditation Requirement which was established by ECFMG in 2010 to encourage international accreditation efforts and enhance the quality of medical education worldwide.
“Starting in 2023, individuals applying for ECFMG Certification must be a student or graduate of a medical school that is appropriately accredited. More specifically, the school must be accredited by an accrediting agency, that is officially recognized by the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME).”
The requirement is intended to encourage the development and implementation of standards for evaluating undergraduate medical education, to provide greater assurance to both medical students and the public that they will be appropriately trained. 
As of today, 13 May 2020, the ECFMG announced that its accreditation requirement, previously commencing in 2023, will now be implemented in 2024.
The full announcement as well as further details regarding this change will be provided in the coming weeks on their website at www.ecfmg.org/accreditation.”
The impact of COVID-19 has been tremendous and many countries have delayed or seized their accreditation efforts due to pandemic. As such, we perceive this change as positive, allowing countries, accrediting agencies and medical schools around the world more time to continue to seek WFME recognition.
Finally, The International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA), would like to affirm that robust quality assurance and accreditation mechanisms safeguard the quality of health systems, and thus accreditation processes should be formalized, have an aspect of impartiality, and adherent to internationally acceptable standards.
Should you have any questions or perspectives to share, please reach out to [email protected].
1- The World Federation for Medical Education. (2020). Recognition Programme – World Federation For Medical Education. [online] Available at: https://wfme.org/accreditation/recognition-programme/
2- Accreditation – 2023 Accreditation Requirement
ECFMG. (2020). Accreditation – 2023 Accreditation Requirement. [online] Available at: https://www.ecfmg.org/accreditation/
3- Ifmsa.org. (2020). [online] Available at: https://ifmsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Adopted_GS_AM2018_Policy_Accreditation_and_QualityAssurance-.pdf [Accessed 12 May 2020].
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