The following questions and answers have been developed based upon information provided by the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies and are interpretations of the requirements outlined on its Web site.
1. How many hours of CE do I need to maintain my license?
Colorado pharmacists are required to complete 24 hours of State Board of Pharmacy approved continuing pharmacy education each 2-year licensure period. The State Board accepts educational activities accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) or approved equivalent and up to 6 hours of pharmacy-related continuing medical education accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME). Click here for text of the law regarding continuing education for Colorado pharmacists.
See also the State Board of Pharmacy Policy 40-1
2. How do I know if a CE program is ACPE-accredited?
To determine if a program is accredited by ACPE, look for the ACPE logo and program number on information brochures regarding the program. If the program number is followed by a “P”, it is accredited for pharmacists. If the program number is followed by a “T”, it is accredited for technicians. Pharmacists can attend technician programs, but credits from technician programs cannot be used for re-licensure.
3. Do I need a specific type of CE credit each year to maintain my license in Colorado?
Colorado does not specify any certain types of CE as long as the programs meet the requirements of the State Board of Pharmacy.
4. What is CPE Monitor?
CPE Monitor is an online repository for continuing pharmacy education managed by ACPE and the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. For CE credit to be posted to CPE Monitor, CE participants must provide their NABP e-Profile ID number and month and day (MMDD) of their birthday to the CE provider. The provider will post the credit to CPE Monitor, where participants can view and print their CE credit. Credit will be posted within 60 days of completion of an activity; credit cannot be posted to CPE Monitor® after 60 days due to ACPE regulations. State boards of pharmacy also access CPE Monitor to verify achievement of CPE requirements.
5. Once CE credits are obtained, how are the credits recorded with the State Board of Pharmacy?
Providers of continuing pharmacy education are required to post all credit for ACPE-accredited educational activities to CPE Monitor rather than providing paper or electronic CE statements of credit. State boards of pharmacy also access records on CPE Monitor.
6. If I have moved from Colorado, are my CE credits valid in other states?
Each state has different requirements. Check with the board of pharmacy in the state in which you are licensed.
7. How soon after graduation do I need to obtain CE credits?
According to the requirements of the Colorado State Board of Pharmacy if a student becomes licensed within 1 year of completing his or her pharmacy education, he or she will not be required to have CE for the first licensing period. For example, if you are a 2016 graduate, you will be responsible for collecting CE credits after October 31, 2017.
8. Are CE credits waived during a residency?
If as a resident pharmacist you are maintaining your license, then you must fulfill the CE requirements. If you have a license from a state other than Colorado, the rules of that state will apply. So, check with your state’s board of pharmacy.
9. Are all the programs offered by University of Colorado School of Pharmacy approved for CE credit in Colorado?
Because the School of Pharmacy schedules many seminars and series on a variety of topics, not all are accredited for CE. Any program that is accredited for pharmacist CE will show the ACPE logo and approved number of credits.
10. Who offers courses?
The School of Pharmacy currently offers a limited number of continuing education activities. Upcoming CE activities are announced in the CE portion of the SOP website.
American Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE)
Provides a searchable database of accredited programs around the country. At the ACPE website, select P.L.A.N. (Pharmacist's Learning Assistance Network), then enter parameters such as program format (home study, live), location, date range, and topic to find a suitable CE program.
The American Pharmacists Association
Offers a variety of CE programs to member and nonmember pharmacists through their Internet site.
The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists
Hosts a Learning Center containing CE resources for pharmacists.
The Colorado Pharmacists Society
Offers a variety of ACPE-accredited and non-accredited educational opportunities to fit a variety of schedules.
In addition, there are many organizations that offer a CE programs, in both live and home study formats.
11. How to get started on obtaining your CE credits?
Check out the courses that are currently available through the organizations listed above. Then follow the registration instructions.