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Continuing Education (CE) Spotlight: VetMedTeam

Online classes at your convenience


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Continuing Education (CE) is something required of most (all?) health professions as a means for practitioners to stay current in their field. The CE requirements for each profession varies state-to-state, but there is usually a minimum amount of time required to be spent learning or reviewing medical information to retain licensure.

In the "old days" before the Internet, completing CE meant taking time off of work, traveling to a conference, and attending the various seminars. CE credits could also be obtained by reading journal articles, taking tests, and mailing in for the results.

In today's busy world, taking time off from work to attend a conference is sometimes hard to do. And while conferences are usually in fun places with full itineraries to make the event family friendly, not all families are willing to travel to a conference location. Today, the Internet makes CE available 24/7. The cost and convenience of online CE is appealing for many busy practitioners.

Various online veterinary quizzes and tests have been around for years and they are fun to try out your knowledge. To find educational opportunities that will satisfy state licensing requirements is another story. Some states will accept online CE as a valid educational resource, some will not. For example, in the state of Washington, veterinarians must complete 30 hours of CE in a 2-year period. Ten of those 30 hours may be from approved online sources, but this was just approved in 2007. Previously, no online CE hours counted for the requirement. Click here to find out if your state requires CE hours for license renewal.

This isn't to say that the only purpose of CE is to fulfill licensing requirements. Continuing education keeps things interesting, helps practitioners practice the best medicine possible, and helps build the veterinary team.

VetMedTeam does all of this and more. This site offers online classes for veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and veterinary office staff on a variety of topics. Here is a sampling of the current course catalog: Abdominal Radiology, Animal Behavior, Client Services, Veterinary Assistant Training Program and Practice Management classes. Course pricing varies by the number of credits offered and the topic. Thanks to funding from Merial, VetMedTeam also offers MerialEDU; a variety of courses offered at no charge for veterinarians and veterinary technicians.

Sign up and membership at VetMedTeam is free. Members have access to additional areas of the site, including Veterinary Economics articles, pet care library, veterinary web resources, forum discussions, surveys and chat.

As part of my research for this article, I signed up and participated in two MerialEDU courses; one on fleas and one on ticks. I was very impressed by the quality of the course materials (text and graphics) and the tests at the end of each course. Even though the courses had definite start and end dates, I was free to complete the course at my own pace. I did one course all at once and the other one I spread out a bit as my schedule permitted. Upon completion of the final test and after the course "closed," I received a CE completion certificate PDF that is always available in the "My Courses" section of the site. This is a plus for someone like me who loses real paper.

I am in no way affiliated with VetMedTeam, just very glad that I happened to find this excellent resource. I highly recommend VetMedTeam to veterinarians and veterinary staff as a means to gain quality education and tools for practice building.

Visit the VetMedTeam site to learn more and sign up!

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