Continuing Education Requirement Effective 1/1/2023:
BOARD & COPE DEFINITIONS:
LIVE: Instructor in the same physical location as the attendee*
DISTANCE: The course Instructor is not in the same physical location as the attendee
(*) Qualifies for Certified Credit - if in medically related subject matter - see definition of certified credit
CRITERIA FOR ALL CONTINUING EDUCATION COURSES
The course must be fully accredited by the Council on Optometric Practitioner Education.
1. Course must be COPE accredited (COPE number)
2. Event must have a COPE Event number
3. Vendor must be an Approved COPE Administrator or Accredited COPE Provider
Courses can be accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) or other healthcare professions' recognized accrediting body.
ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS TO BE CLASSIFIED AS “CERTIFIED CREDIT”
1. Course must be at least 1 hour in length
2. Course must be on Subject Matter as listed below:
Self-Evaluation / Examination.
Licensees taking examinations approved by the Board designed to assess Continued Professional Development in Optometry (CPDO) shall be awarded twelve (12) hours*of “Certified Credit”.
*A licensee is limited to twelve hours (12) “Certified Credit” once every three years for taking examinations designed to assess continued professional development (CPDO).
CRITERIA FOR “GENERAL” CREDIT:
For those of you who graduated in the spring of the calendar year in which you have been licensed, the Board considers the time spent in your academic training as fulfilling the total requirement for the calendar year; however, all licensees will be required to fulfill the opioid course requirement. Those who are being licensed in a year other than the year of your graduation from optometry school, are expected to meet the total requirement.
COPE Optional Policy for NC State Optometric Society Districts
(in effect until December 31, 2022)
Each district must submit a completed course information form, found here: http://goo.gl/forms/P43N2WFiPO , no less than 7 days prior to the event. Upon receipt of the form and course outline, the board staff will review the documentation and respond with approval and determination of credit
Any courses submitted less than 7 days in advance will be denied approval of credit.
After the event, all attendance documentation must be submitted within 7 days
FAILURE TO MEET ANNUAL CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
21 NCAC 42B .0303 (link)
For failure to comply with 21 NCAC 42B .0302 the optometrist is subject to disciplinary action by the Board pursuant to G.S. 90-121.2; provided, however, for a first offense the Board may require an additional three hours, and for the second offense six additional hours of attendance at approved continuing education programs. Any penalty imposed will require that the additional hours be fulfilled in addition to the required hours for the ensuing year.
Adopted June 1, 1989
Amended March 22, 2014
Amended August 29, 2015
Amended November 24, 2015
Amended February 12, 2016
Amended November 9, 2017
Amended November 8, 2018
Amended November 7, 2019
Amended March 18, 2020
Amended August 29, 2022