Maximizing the Benefits of Continuing Education
Swank HealthCare hosts Webinar with Rebecca Smallwood
Take this quick quiz to test your knowledge of continuing education
* course numbers may vary by facility
Maintaining professional competence is a core responsibility of each health professional, regardless of discipline, specialty, or type of practice. This requires a commitment to lifelong learning and continuing professional development. A primary component of these functions is continuing education, which should be based on the principles of:
To maximize the benefits of continuing education, there are 5 important steps that healthcare professionals must take.
Step 1: Make a commitment – Not only do you have a responsibility to your patients to maintain professional competencies, a commitment to lifelong learning through continuing education is a key element to career and professional development. Make a decision to invest in improving your knowledge and skills throughout your career. Professionals who make this commitment say the more they learn and grow, the more fulfilling their professional lives become.
Step 2: Assess your career goals and professional learning needs –The famous author and motivational speaker, Zig Ziglar said, “If you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time.” To make sure you’re on the right path, you need to know where you want to go. To do this, you must determine what your professional goals are and what types of new knowledge and skills are needed to meet them. Once you’ve determined your destination, ask yourself these questions to help in establishing your learning needs: What types of learning are needed? Do you need to invest in completing a foundational degree, advanced degree, certification, CE courses? Where do you have gaps in knowledge, and where will new evidence-based learning help you provide better care to patients in your current roles and in reaching your professional and goals? What types of CE are required to maintain your license or certifications? What types of continuing education are required by your employer? What topics interest you? What CE is available to you? What time commitments are necessary to complete the CE you need? What are the best ways to fit CE into your schedule?
Step 3: Develop a strategic plan – Keeping up with the pace of new information in healthcare is sometimes like drinking from a fire hose.
When engaging in continuing education, these points provide clear reasons why it’s so important to develop a strategic plan. The key is to prioritize your learning needs:
Step 4: Be deliberate and consistent – Your strategic plan should also include a schedule for meeting your learning needs that is deliberate and consistently applied. It’s important to remember that new learning will require time commitments, but trying to fit too many CE activities into an already busy schedule is a recipe for failure. Determine goals for when you will engage in and complete components of CE based on deadlines required by licensing and certification authorities, your employer, your schedule, and career goals. Try to space learning activities across your schedule week to week and month to month. Be sure to include flexibility in your plan and make sure you complete activities with time to spare in case situations or circumstances create unexpected delays.
Step 5: Adjust as needed – The last step needed to maximize the benefits of continuing education is to regularly assess your plan to make sure you’re staying on track and to make adjustments as needed.
On April 30, Rebecca Smallwood conducted a webinar on the Road to Patient Safety. In this she described strategies, progress and the challenges along with ways to improve the patient’s safety and healthcare quality...
Online learning continues to the preferred delivery method for continuing education. Here are the top advantages online learning provides:
Take this quick quiz to test your knowledge of continuing education for healthcare professionals.
A. .5 (30 minutes)
B. .75 (45 minutes)
C. 1 (1 hour)
D. 1.25 (1 hour and 25 minutes)
D. 50 plus the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico
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1 (1 hour) ×
50 plus the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico×
11 Those states include the following: California (50 hours, DOs), Illinois (50 hours), Kansas (50 hours), Maine (50 hours, DOs and MDs), Massachusetts (50 hours), Michigan (50 hours), DOs and MDs), New Hampshire (50 hours), North Carolina (50 hours), Ohio (50 hours), Pennsylvania (50 hours, DOs and MDs), Washington (50 hours, DOs and MDs)×