What Does it Take to Be a Successful Medical Director?

Whether you have been working in the field for one year or 20, the Core Curriculum on Medical Direction in Post-Acute and Long-Term Care (PALTC) will give you the tools you need to succeed as a medical director. The Core Curriculum is the only program of its kind, offering comprehensive instruction on management and leadership within the PALTC setting. This program allows medical directors to connect from around the country with vastly different experiences, discover what is happening at other facilities, and gain ideas, support, and inspiration. 




The goal of this training course is to foster and enhance the leadership role of the medical director by:

  • Developing practical skills needed to fulfill the role and responsibilities of the medical director.
  • Identifying the unique aspects of the PALTC environment that impact the medical director’s job.
  • Describing the organizational dynamics of the medical director and the interdisciplinary team.
  • Developing communication skills, leadership skills, and team building strategies to deal with responsibilities for the interdisciplinary team, residents, and their families.
  • Explaining the resident care responsibilities of the medical director, including emergency care, quality management, family systems, and ethical considerations.
  • Improving the medical director’s ability to learn and practice in the evolving environment of health care delivery.
  • Applying newly acquired knowledge to daily facility and practice activities.

The Core Curriculum provides education about PALTC that I did not get from medical school, residency, or fellowship. It is specific to better navigating the complex clinical and administrative challenges in the nursing home. AMDA's education is very high yield and relevant to my practice in the nursing home and as medical director."  -  Past Attendee


Key Topics

Areas of focus include:

  • Employee Health and Safety
  • Fundamentals of Nursing Facility Financing and Financial Delivery Models
  • Health Care Ethics
  • Health Information Management
  • Infection Prevention and Control
  • Leadership Skills
  • Medical Director Leadership Beyond the Nursing Home Walls: Hospice, PACE, ACOs, Assisted Living
  • Medical Director's Agreement and Reporting Responsibilities
  • Medical Staff Coordination
  • Organizational Structure, Culture, and Relationships
  • Overview of PALTC Setting
  • Quality Management
  • Regulatory Environment
  • Resident Assessment and Management
  • Resident Rights
  • Risk Management
  • Roles, Functions, and Tasks of a Medical Director
  • Systems Theory and Problem-Solving
  • Transitions of Care
  • Working with Families
  • Working Within Nursing Facility Committees and Administrative Structures


Course Format

The Core Curriculum is Divided into Two Parts:

  1. Online Core Curriculum: The Online Core consists of a series of 30 interactive on-demand modules that provide comprehensive instruction on the medical director role within the PALTC setting. The course also includes live monthly facilitator-led virtual forums, allowing you to discuss the course material in real-time with faculty and other participants. You can start and complete the course at your own pace and on your own schedule.
  2. Core Synthesis: A weekend program comprised of dynamic lectures, interactive role plays, case-based discussions, and small group breakouts. Core Synthesis is offered in both in-person and virtual formats multiple times per year.
Completing the Online Core is a prerequisite for attending the Core Synthesis weekend. You may register for both the Online Core and Core Synthesis at the same time, but you must complete the Online Core portion of the curriculum before the start date of the Core Synthesis weekend on which you are registered. 



Luz Ramos-Bonner, MD, MBA, CMD (Chair)
Thomas Lawrence, MD, CMD (Past Chair)
Rebecca Elon, MD, MPH, CMD
Rebecca Ferrini, MD, MPH, CMD
John Heath MD, CMD
Cynthia Kuttner, MD, CMD
Lee Lindquist, MD, MPH, MBA, CMD
Dheeraj Mahajan, MD, CMD
Tsewang Ngodup, MD, MPH, CMD, AGSF, HMDC
Meenakshi Patel, MD, MMM, CMD
Toby Smith, DO, CMD
Todd Sobol, MD, CMD
Richard Stefanacci, DO, MBA, AGSF, CMD
Jean Storm, DO, CMD
Barbara Tommasulo, MD, CMD, CWSP, LNHA
Michael Wasserman, MD, CMD
Matthew Wayne, MD, CMD
Peter Winn, MD, CMD


Certified Medical Director (CMD) Program

The American Board of Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine (ABPLM) CMD credential recognizes the dual clinical and managerial roles of the medical director. Certification requires indicators of competence in clinical medicine and medical management in post-acute and long-term care.

The certification process is based on an experiential model that incorporates existing mechanisms such as fellowship programs, board certification, continuing medical education, ABPLM-approved and AMDA-sponsored courses in medical direction, and other continuing education programs to fulfill certification requirements. Since 1991, more than 3,500 medical directors have earned their CMD credential. For full eligibility requirements, click here.

California Nursing Home Medical Directors
California Assembly Bill AB 749 requires nursing home medical directors in California to be certified by the American Board of Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine (ABPLM).

The Core Curriculum (Online and Synthesis) or its equivalent PALTC management educational program is required for all Certified Medical Director (CMD) candidates. Learn more about the certification process.



Course Pricing


  Member Price Non-Member Price
Online Core Regular Rate $1,795 Regular Rate $1,995
Synthesis Course Early Bird Rate $795
Regular Rate $895
Late Rate $995
Early Bird Rate $1,095
Regular Rate $1,195
Late Rate $1,295
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Please click on individual course offerings below to register or for more information on dates, rates, and credits.

Questions? Please contact us at education@paltc.org

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Core Curriculum on Medical Direction