Major health care reforms are being debated in the United States. While these debates address issues of access and cost, the systems-based problems of patient safety, continuous quality improvement, and an integrated approach to continuing professional development (CPD) remain traditional opportunities for the profession to directly improve health care and maintain professional accountability. Such challenges can be addressed independently of proposed reforms and offer an opportunity for the profession to build greater public trust. Given recent evidence questioning many assumptions behind individually focused CPD, and as physicians' work shifts into group and team contexts, it is an opportune time to address better CPD strategies within emerging group and team settings.The first strategic change requires a focus on managing the development of the individual physician's educational growth into a systems-oriented approach based on better information and feedback within groups of practitioners and health care teams. Second, the renewal of the linked visions of professional collegiality and accountability with professional regulation needs to be seen as a collective responsibility across key organizations within the profession's normal accountability framework. Thus, the professional colleges, certifying boards, and regulatory authorities need to collaborate with the CDP community in refocusing their collective activities to promote the profession's traditional role of improving the quality of care and maintaining the public's trust in these times of intense policy debate.