CDC Public Health Training Network Offers Free Online Continuing Education Courses
Many schools and organizations offer courses and other activities for continuing education credit. Courses can vary widely in price, location and media. Instead of paying for continuing education courses, health professionals can choose to complete courses online for free through the The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Public Health Training Network (PHTN), a distance learning network that offers a wide selection of free courses.
Health professionals, such as physicians, nurses and certified health education specialists, need to complete continuing education units for recertification. For example, physicians in California need to accrue 50 hours every two years to renew their license.
Some classes are offered online. Most courses are free and some have an online video component. Students can also elect to take courses and pay only for the media, such as books, video, CD or slides.
Some media do not carry credit. Look for the CE icon.
The CDC has been approved as a provider of continuing education by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc.; American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation, and International Association for Continuing Education and Training.
The CDC offers CME credit for physician and non-physicians, CNE credit for nurses, CECH credit for Certified Health Education Specialists, and CEU credit for other professionals.
When selecting courses, determine if the course providers are approved by the appropriate national accrediting organizations and state boards. For instance, the CDC states the following about California Board of Nursing stipulations:
“The California Board of Nursing will accept CDC’s ANCC credit for self-study courses.
However, they will not accept ANCC credit for courses offered within the state of California. “
For more information, read the Occupational Outlook Handbook, look for your health profession and read “sources of additional information. ”
Diana Clarke is a certificated teacher and health educator. Her articles have appeared in magazines and newspapers, including the Ssn Jose Mercury News. She is the San Jose Family Health Examiner on examiner.com. Visit her website at http://www.examiner.com/x-5138-San-Jose-Family-Health-Examiner