Location:
MEDICAL PERSONNEL; OCCUPATIONAL TRAINING;
Scope:
Connecticut laws/regulations; Background;

OLR Research Report


August 1, 2012

 

2012-R-0285

OLR BACKGROUNDER: CONTINUING EDUCATION FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONS

By: James Orlando, Associate Analyst

State law requires continuing education for license renewal for several categories of health professions. Generally, the applicable law or regulations (1) define basic requirements for continuing education programs, (2) establish a system to document that a professional satisfied the requirements, and (3) allow the relevant agency to waive a continuing education requirement due to a medical disability or for good cause.

Table 1 lists all professions regulated by the Department of Public Health that must complete continuing education for state license or certification renewal. The table also includes pharmacists, who are licensed by the Department of Consumer Protection.

Please note that for all of the professions listed below, the continuing education requirements are waived for the first license renewal period.

Table 1: Continuing Education Requirements for Health Professions' License Renewal

Profession

Statutory Authority

Required Hours (per Period)

Acupuncturists

PA 12-39 and PA 12-197 (amending CGS 20-206bb)

30 (two years) or

maintain certification by National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Requirement starts with registration periods beginning on or after October 1, 2014

Alcohol and Drug Counselors

CGS 20-74t

20 (one year)

Audiologists

CGS 20-395d

20 (two years)

Requirement started with registration periods beginning on or after October 1, 2011

Chiropractors

CGS 20-32

48 (two years)

Dental Hygienists

CGS 20-126l

16 (two years)

Dentists

CGS 20-126c

25 (two years)

Electrologists

CGS 20-275

10 (two years)

Embalmers

CGS 20-219a

6 (one year)

Funeral Directors

CGS 20-219a

6 (one year)

Hearing Instrument Specialists

PA 12-110 (amending CGS 20-402)

16 (two years)

Requirement starts with registration periods beginning on or after October 1, 2014

Marital and Family Therapists

CGS 20-195c

15 (one year)

Massage Therapists

CGS 20-206f

24 (four years)

Naturopathic Physicians

CGS 20-41a

15 (one year)

Nursing Home Administrators

CGS 19a-515

40 (two years)

Occupational Therapists*

CGS 20-74h and 20-74i

24 (two years)

Occupational Therapy Assistants*

CGS 20-74h and 20-74i

18 (two years)

Opticians

CGS 20-146

7 (one year)

Optometrists

CGS 20-128a

20 (one year)

Pharmacists

CGS 20-599 and 20-600

15 (one year)

Physical Therapists

CGS 20-73b

20 (one year)

Physicians/Surgeons

CGS 20-10b

50 (two years)

Professional Counselors

CGS 20-195cc

15 (one year)

Radiographers

CGS 20-74ff

24 (two years) or

maintain registration as a radiographer or radiation therapy technologist by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists

Respiratory Care Practitioners

CGS 20-162r

6 (one year)

Table 1: -Continued-

Profession

Statutory Authority

Required Hours (per Period)

Social Workers

CGS 20-195o and 20-195u

15 (one year)

Speech and Language Pathologists

CGS 20-411a

20 (two years)

Requirement started with registration periods beginning on and after October 1, 2011

Veterinarians

CGS 20-201a

24 (two years)

Requirement started with registration periods beginning on and after July 1, 2011

*called “continued competency” for these professions

In addition, some professions' national certifying bodies may require continuing education to maintain certification. For example, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association) requires professional development, which may include continuing education or other specified components, as part of the certification renewal process. Certifications must be renewed every five years, and the specific requirements vary depending on the type of certification. Effective January 1, 2014, all renewal applicants will be required to fulfill 75 contact hours of continuing education as half of their professional development requirement. More information is available on the center's website: http://www.nursecredentialing.org/RenewalRequirements.aspx.

For another example, the American Academy of Physician Assistants requires physician assistants to complete 100 hours of continuing education every two years to maintain national certification (http://www.aapa.org/your_pa_career/licensing_and_certification.aspx).

JO:ts