Bookmark and Share

PIMs for Training Programs

Practice Improvement Modules (PIMs) for training programs allow for convenient and easy documentation of program activity in all of the ACGME general competencies. PIMs are particularly useful in documenting activity in practice-based learning and improvement and systems-based practice.

PIMs allow faculty, residents, and fellows the ability to analyze and evaluate practice performance. View a bibliography of literature supporting PIM use in training.


Available PIMs for Training Programs

Care Coordination - Specialist PIM
Chronic Kidney Disease
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Communication – Primary Care
Communication – Subspecialists
Palliative Care for Primary Care & Subspecialist Physicians PIM
Preventive Cardiology

View PIM demonstrations

Program Directors, Supervising Physicians, and Attending Physicians enrolled in the ABIM Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Program can choose any ABIM PIM; however, there is one ABIM PIM that has been especially created for faculty- the Clinical Supervision PIM is a reflective PIM that helps faculty improve those skills necessary for observing and evaluating trainees.


Guidelines for using PIMs in Training Programs

Data Collection

Working in a group, participants use the PIM to collect practice data to calculate performance measures. These performance measures will be used to conduct several rapid cycle tests to improve performance. Data collection involves two or three of the following activities, depending on the selected PIM*:

  • Patient survey: ABIM recommends receiving a number of completed patient surveys equal to five times the number of participants. If this number is not feasible, ABIM will accept a minimum of 25 survey responses. If the group has four or fewer participants, a minimum of 25 completed surveys must be received by ABIM.
  • Patient medical record audit: ABIM recommends receiving a number of medical record audits equal to five times the number of participants. If the group has four or fewer participants, a minimum of 25 charts must be reviewed. Any practice performance data that includes Protected Health Information is maintained in a HIPAA-compliant manner.
  • Systems examination: The group is required to complete one Examine Systems Survey. Ideally, all clinical staff should meet to discuss the questions raised in the survey. Having nursing and administrative staff present will add value to this section of the PIM.

* The HIV and Colonoscopy modules do not include a patient survey. Visit the Practice Assessment Selector Tool to review data collection guidelines for training programs.

Quality Improvement

After data are submitted to ABIM, an aggregate report is provided to the group to guide development and implementation of a quality improvement exercise for one or more aspects of the practice. The Quality Improvement portion of the PIM consists of the following steps:

  • Review the summary report to develop a quality improvement plan for one performance measure.
  • Implement the Improvement Plan and collect data in order to remeasure performance in that area.
  • Report the results of one of the changes you made in your practice.
  • Submit your completed PIM to ABIM.

Institutional Review Board

Because the PIM is primarily a quality improvement instrument rather than a research instrument, no IRB review is necessary. In order to comply with HIPAA, PIM users are asked to enter a "generic" patient identifier when entering patient chart data (e.g. P1 for the first patient chart).


Earn ABIM MOC and CME Credit

Faculty and fellows who are enrolled in ABIM’s Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program may receive up to 40 MOC points as well as 20 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ for completing a PIM. The number of MOC points awarded depends on the PIM selected.


Request a PIM

Log in to request and Administer PIMs for Residents and Fellows as a Program Director or Administrator.

Some points to keep in mind when requesting a PIM:

  • The process is driven by your institution's FasTrack number, account name, and password. Check with your Program Director or Program Administrator for more information on FasTrack.
  • All PIMs in Residency requests are final. Participants cannot be added to the PIM once the requests is confirmed. Call 1-800-441-2246 or e-mail if you have any questions about using ABIM's PIM products with your trainees.

Work on a PIM

Log in to work on a PIM.