Continuing Education (CE)

Licensees are required to earn Continuing Education (CE) in order to meet minimum requirements for the biennial renewal, reinstatement, or issuance of the RN or LPN license. Advanced Practice Nurses (APNs) must also earn Pharmacology CE.
AUDIT

The Board conducts annual random audits of documentation provided on the Individual CE Record at the time of renewal. The Board notifies the licensee of selection for the CE Audit.  It is the nurse’s responsibility to ensure the accuracy of mailing and email addresses so that a Notice of Audit may be received.


INDIVIDUAL CE RECORD

Continuing Education (CE): CE hours may be viewed, edited, and entered from providers who are not Alabama Board of Nursing CE providers by going to My Profile.

  • Do not enter or upload CE earned from a Board-approved provider with an ABNP number.
  • If you have earned CE from a Board-approved provider with an ABNP number that is not in your Individual CE Record, please contact the provider.
  • If chosen for the CE Audit, a licensee who earned credit solely from ABNP providers does not need to submit proof in order to satisfy the audit requirements.

ABN ONLINE COURSES

The ABN is mandated by law to provide CE for nurses to meet the healthcare needs of Alabama citizens. The Alabama Nursing Resource Center (ANRC) is how the ABN accomplishes this directive.

Visit ANRC Nursing CE

CE PROVIDER LOOKUP

You may search for local and statewide CE opportunities by using the CE Provider Lookup.

To filter the list of the providers, type the information in the boxes provided at the top of the appropriate column.

  • You may search by the ABNP number or name if you know the information
  • You may perform a location search by entering any of the following filters: City, State, Zip, County

Access ABN Approved CE Providers (ABNP) lookup


PRORATED CE CHART

Continuing Education Contact Hours Required According to Month and Year Licensed
(Table covers the 2017 LPN and 2018 RN renewal period)

Newly licensed by examination nurses must complete the four-contact hours Board-provided continuing education class related to Board functions, the Nurse Practice Act, regulations, professional conduct, and accountability. If you have not completed this course, please sign in and view the mandatory course.


Month of
Licensure
Year Licensed
RN
Year Licensed
LPN
# Contact
Hours Needed
December
2016
2015
24
January
2017
2016
23
February
2017
2016
22
March
2017
2016
21
April
2017
2016
20
May
2017
2016
19
June
2017
2016
18
July
2017
2016
17
August
2017
2016
16
September
2017
2016
15
October
2017
2016
14
November
2017
2016
13
December
2017
2016
12
January
2018
2017
11
February
2018
2017
10
March
2018
2017
9
April
2018
2017
8
May
2018
2017
7
June
2018
2017
6
July
2018
2017
5
August
2018
2017
4
September
2018
2017
0
October
2018
2017
0
November
2018
2017
0
December
2018
2017
0

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

CE Audit Frequently Asked Questions

Continuing Education Reporting and Audit FAQ

What information regarding continuing education is required for license renewal?

The Renewal process cannot be completed until documentation of at least twenty-four (24) contact hours of CE has been uploaded to your CE Record on the ABN website. Please follow the instructions provided prior to starting the Renewal process.

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What is an audit?

The Board conducts audits to determine compliance with requirements for continuing education for license renewal. An audit consists of a review of documentation of continuing education.  The nurse will receive a letter of audit within 30 days before the renewal period.    Nurses will be asked to submit records of continuing education activities/courses completed in the appropriate accrual period.  The Board reviews individual online CE records for all nurses selected for audit.

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What happens if records are not submitted on time?

Licensees failing to comply with requests for documents within the appropriate time must pay a late CE compliance fee. Current late CE compliance fees are:

  • 1st time: $150.00
  • 2nd time: $300.00
  • 3 or more times: $600.00

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What happens if records do not evidence compliance?

Nurses failing to meet continuing education requirements are subject to disciplinary action by the Board as outlined in the Alabama Board of Nursing Administrative Code, Chapter 610-X-8 and Chapter 610-X-10, pursuant to the Code of Alabama, 1975, Section 34-21-25. Failure to meet continuing education requirements shall be cause for the license to lapse.

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Are there circumstances where a nurse may be automatically selected for audit?

A nurse who fails to comply with requests for documents within the time specified or fails to evidence compliance will be selected for audit the subsequent renewal.

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What happens if the nurse does not respond to the continuing education audit?

A registered nurse or licensed practical nurse who fails to comply with reporting requirements of the audit, requests for documents, or submits false, inaccurate, or incomplete evidence of meeting continuing education requirements will be subject to disciplinary action by the Board.

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CE Frequently Asked Questions

Continuing Education FAQ

What is Continuing Education?

Rule 610-X-10-.01 (4) of the Alabama Board of Nursing Administrative Code defines continuing education as “planned, organized learning experiences designed to augment the knowledge,  skill, and ability to enhance nursing practice and therefore improve health care delivered to the public.”

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What content is acceptable as continuing education for license renewal?

Acceptable content (610-X-10-.03) must be beyond the basic educational level for entry into practice of the individual licensee and includes:

  • Clinical technology, procedures, and nursing implications.
  • Specialty areas of nursing practice.
  • Nursing practice related to care of the patient.
  • Administration, management, and supervision in health care delivery.
  • Social, legal, and ethical aspects of nursing.
  • Nursing education.
  • Nursing research, theory, and practice issues.
  • Quality improvement and management, accrediting standards, and processes.
  • Academic credit applicable to nursing that is earned from liberal arts, sciences, business, and general education courses obtained after initial licensure from an institution accredited by an educational accrediting body or that is earned in pursuit of a higher degree in nursing.
  • Professional conduct.

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Are there content requirements for continuing education?

Beginning October 1, 2002, as a part of the 24 Board-approved or Board-recognized continuing education contact hours for license renewal [610-X-4-.08]:

  1. Certified Registered Nurse Practitioners (CRNP) and Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM) with prescriptive authority shall earn six contact hours of pharmacology content specific to prescriptive practice in the approved area for collaborative practice.
  2. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) shall earn six contact hours of pharmacology.
  3. A registered nurse or licensed practical nurse licensed by examination during the earning period shall, for the first license renewal, earn four (4) contact hours of Board provided continuing education related to Board functions, the Nurse Practice Act, regulations, professional conduct, and accountability and one contact hour for each calendar month remaining in the earning period up to a maximum of 24 contact hours including the mandatory class.

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I need to take the mandatory class. I heard it was offered online. Where can I find this class?

Follow the outlined steps:

  1. Go to the Alabama Board of Nursing web site, www.abn.alabama.gov.
  2. After entering the site, select the Alabama Nursing Resource Center, then select the Nursing CE tab.
  3. Before selecting to view a class:
    • Test your system to determine readiness to view online courses.
    • Review Frequently Asked Questions, including system requirements.
  4. Choose the mandatory class by selecting the (+) next to it. You will be required to log in at this point. Log in requires your Alabama nursing license number and the last four digits of your social security number as your pin number.
  5. Select and view.
  6. If you are required to complete the class, you must view each segment of the class to earn the four (4.0) contact hours of continuing education.

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Can anyone take the class and receive credit or is it available only for nurses who must complete the class?

Any Alabama licensed nurse may view the online class and receive credit. If not licensed, you cannot receive credit.

You may view the classes multiple times, but credit hours will be earned for only one viewing. As sections are updated, you may receive credit hours for viewing the updated sections.

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How can I earn continuing education for license renewal?

Continuing education can be earned from activity(ies) provided or approved by an Alabama Board of Nursing approved provider of continuing education or a Board-recognized provider of continuing education.

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Will I receive credit for continuing education activities not obtained from a Board-approved provider?

Yes, if the continuing education is received from a recognized provider [610-X-10-.04(2)]. Continuing education must be from a Board-approved or Board-recognized provider.

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How many contact hours of continuing education are required for license renewal for registered nurses and licensed practical nurses?

To renew a license on active status to practice nursing in Alabama, registered nurses and licensed practical nurses must earn 24 contact hours from a Board-approved or Board -recognized continuing education provider [Chapter 610-X-4-.08]. If licensed by examination, reinstatement, or endorsement during the earning period the contact hours are prorated. A prorated chart is on the Board’s web site, www.abn.alabama.gov, under Continuing Education, then select Nurses.

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What is a contact hour?

A contact hour is a unit of measurement of organized learning experience lasting fifty (50) minutes [610-X-2-.10(5)]. When attending a conference, workshop, or course that lasts a full day, contact hours are calculated on the basis of time spent in class/at presentations. Time spent for breaks, lunches, and general meetings is not counted as part of the contact hours.

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What is the earning period for accruing continuing education?

Continuing Education Earning Period: Two-year period of time during which contact hours shall be accrued. The license renewal year for licensed practical nurses occurs every odd year. The license renewal year for registered nurses occurs every even year. Effective January 1, 2009, the earning period for registered nurses shall be the same as the license period. Effective January 1, 2008, the earning period for licensed practical nurses shall be the same as the license period.

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May I edit my Individual CE Record maintained on the ABN website?

Yes, nurses may view/edit their Individual CE Record at My Profile. Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers submit electronic records to the ABN of continuing education provided to licensed Alabama nurses [610-X-10-.06 (2) (e)]. The Individual CE Record reflects continuing education obtained from Board–approved providers (ABNP) for the current earning period.

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My individual online continuing education record does not list all the classes I have taken from Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers. What should I do?

Contact the continuing education provider. The provider will be able to tell you whether the class has been submitted to the Board. The provider will follow up with the ABN to resolve the problem if necessary.

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Will continuing education courses/activities attended in another state count toward license renewal?

Courses/activities attended by licensees in another state which are approved by another board of nursing are considered to be acceptable continuing education activities. The nurse will need to add these classes to his/her individual online continuing education record and upload the respective certificate(s) as proof of completion.

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Will the Board of Nursing accept continuing education credit granted by another profession?

The Board has specified selected categories of courses or activities which have undergone appropriate review by other state regulatory agencies and professions are acceptable. Examples of acceptable categories include, but are not limited to, courses approved by the Board of Dental Examiners, the Alabama State Bar, the Board of Pharmacy, the Board of Social Work Examiners, the Board of Education, the Alabama Nursing Home Administration Board, the Psychology Examiners Board, and courses classified as Category I Continuing Medical Education by the American Medical Association.

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What records/documents are required to substantiate earned continuing education contact hours? Who keeps the documents?

The nurse’s Individual CE Record on the ABN website. Certificates, transcripts, or other documentation of attendance at, or completion of, continuing education activities may substantiate contact hours for license renewal. Nurses are responsible for maintaining their own continuing education records for at least four (4) years after completion of the approved CE activity.

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How many contact hours of continuing education are required for reinstatement of a lapsed license?

Applicants who request reinstatement of a lapsed license must provide evidence of having earned 24 approved continuing education contact hours within the 24 months immediately preceding the date of the application. Nurses whose licenses are reinstated shall accrue for license renewal one contact hour for each calendar month remaining in the license period after reinstatement. Contact hours earned for reinstatement of a lapsed license cannot be used toward the continuing education requirement for the next license renewal period.

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Does the Board maintain a record of my continuing education?

Yes, nurses may view their individual online CE records at the Board’s web site, www.abn.alabama.gov. Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers submit electronic records to the Board of continuing education provided to licensed Alabama nurses [610-X-10-.06 (2) (d)].  The individual online CE record reflects continuing education obtained for current and previous renewal periods.

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What happens if a licensed nurse fails to meet continuing education requirements?

Failure to meet continuing education requirements shall be cause for the license to lapse.

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Mandatory CE Frequently Asked Questions

Mandatory Class FAQ

Who needs to complete the class?

Nurses licensed by examination on or after October 1, 2002, must complete four contact hours of Board-provided continuing education related to Board functions, the Nurse Practice Act, regulations, professional conduct, and accountability.

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When must the class be completed?

A registered nurse or licensed practical nurse licensed by examination during the earning period must complete the mandatory class before the first license renewal.

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How do I access the class online?

Follow the outlined steps:

  1. Go to the Alabama Board of Nursing web address, www.abn.alabama.gov.
  2. Select the Alabama Nursing Resource Center, then select the Nursing CE tab.
  3. Before selecting to view the class you need to view Frequently Asked Questions, including system requirements.
  4. Now select view current CE courses offered by ABN. You will be required to log in at this point.
  5. Select and review all segments.
  6. You must view each segment of the class to earn the 4.0 contact hours of continuing education. No partial credit will be awarded.
  7. If you have questions regarding content, contact joyce.jeter@abn.alabama.gov.  For technical assistance, contact richard.boyette@abn.alabama.gov.

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If I viewed the class by video prior to implementation of the online class May 8, 2006, can I view the class again for credit?

Yes, you can view the online class and receive credit, as this is an update. You will receive credit for this viewing only once. You can view the online class multiple time, but credit hours will be earned for only one viewing.

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If I viewed the mandatory class online, can I view the class again during another earning period for credit?

You may repeat the class any time, but you will not receive additional credit. As portions of the class are updated as indicated in the Table of Contents, you may view the updated section(s) and receive credit.

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How will I know that I have received credit for the class?

You will be able to check your online individual CE record when you have completed the class and verify the information. You can access your online individual CE record under My Profile at the Board’s web site www.abn.alabama.gov.

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ABNP APPLICATIONS
ABNP Initial Application– Use this application if you have never been issued an ABN provider number. A $400.00 provider fee must be submitted with the application.
ABNP Continued Approval Application – Use this application if you are an active ABN provider seeking to renew provider status. A $400.00 provider fee must be submitted with the application.
ABNP Reinstatement Application– for lapsed providers that did not meet their renewal deadline or have retired and wish to reinstate their provider number. A $500.00 provider fee must be submitted with the application.
ABNP Change in Information Form– Notify the Alabama Board of Nursing of changes in the Program Director, Nurse Consultant, mailing/physical address, telephone number, email address or any other pertinent information.
ABNP Retirement Form -Notify the Alabama Board of Nursing of retirement of the provider number and the plan for return of the TriCorder.

EXAMPLE FORMS

The blank forms below may be used to document ABNP CE activities. The format may be customized (such as logo or Provider name) by the CE Provider, but should minimally contain the same information.


TRICORDER USE

Software Download

Tricorder Documentation and User Guide (files will open as PDFs)

Tricorder Troubleshooting

  • ERROR 9
    To correct this you will need to apply the patch. To do this, go to Software Download section above and right click the link for the Tricorder Software Patch and select ‘Save target as…’ or ‘Save link as…’ depending on what browser you are using. Select where you want to save the zip file.
    Open the zip file and copy the file to the directory where the tricorder software is installed. If you installed using the default location the software is located at C:\Program Files\ABN. Overwrite the ABN.exe file that is already there. Now run the software.
  • ERROR 75
    This usually occurs immediately after installing the software on a machine (usually Windows7). The directories where the software is installed needs to have Write permissions. To correct this issue, check the security setting on the directory where the ABN software is installed. If you used the default location to install, then the software is installed at C:\Program Files\ABN. Find the directory, right click it and select ‘Properties’ from the menu. The following box should appear. Find the Security tab and check to see if the security for the Users group has Write permission. If it doesn’t you need to add the Write permission.
  • Instructions – Error 75
  • ERROR 8002 – Invalid Port number
  • TRANSMIT FAILED – Unable to Locate Provider Information
    If you have an active provider number and receive this error check to make sure the provider number (ABNPXXXX) you have entered on the class record is correct.
    To do this make sure the class record is in the Incomplete Class Data box. If it is in the Ready to Transmit Class Data box highlight it and click Mark as Incomplete. This will move the class back to the Incomplete Class Data box. Highlight the class and click the Edit Class Data button. Check to make sure the provider number is correct and includes no additional spaces. If it is incorrect the class will not be able to transmit class data. Once the entry is correct, check the Class Edit Complete box and click the Update button. If this does not work, check to see if you can reach our FTP site. To get there open up a browser and type ftp.abn.alabama.gov into the address bar. If you are not prompted for a username and password, then your network is blocking access to our FTP site.
  • TRANSMIT FAILED – Please Provider an ID-E Reader Serial Number
    Find the Tricorder Serial number located on the back/bottom of the machine. It starts with the letter ‘A’. Launch the software, click the Transfer Class Data button that is located under the Incomplete Class Data box. Enter the serial number in the appropriate field. Click the red ‘X’ at the top of the box. You should be prompted to Save Your Changes. Click ‘Yes’. Try to submit the class.

PREVIEW SUBMITTED CLASSES

Please LOG IN to access the Approved Provider Class Listing.


VIDEOS
Continuing Education Rules

      

CE Providers

   


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Continuing Education Provider FAQ

What is a Board-approved provider?

An individual, partnership, association, organization, educational institution, governmental agency, or licensed health care facility, including hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, home health agencies, or other organized health care facilities, offering continuing education for nurses that meet Board criteria for approval. [610-X-2-.10 (1)]

How does an entity become approved by the Board of Nursing?

Approved providers must evidence capability to adhere to criteria indicative of quality continuing education activities for nurses. The criteria include specific requirements such as having an organized educational unit and a program director, policies and procedures which facilitate efficient operation of planned continuing education activities including maintenance of reports and records, and appropriate educational facilities, resources, and instructors. The complete criteria with guidelines are available through the Board office. [610-X-10-.06]

What is a Board-recognized provider?

Board Recognized Continuing Education Provider: A national or regional agency, journal, Alabama regulatory agency or board, or another Board of Nursing, recognized by the Alabama Board of Nursing as providing or approving continuing education in accordance with criteria that are substantially the same as those required of Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers of continuing education. [610-X-2-.10(2)]

Do I have to be a registered nurse to be a program director for a continuing education provider?

The program director may be a registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, or otherwise qualified individual. When the program director is not a registered nurse licensed in Alabama there shall be evidence of consultation by a registered nurse licensed in Alabama. [610-X-10-.06(2)(b)]

I attended a program offered by a Board approved provider and the instructor was not well prepared. How can I report the incident?

Please share your comments with the contact person for the provider number and the Board. You can contact the continuing education nurse consultant at the Board. Contact information for Board staff is located at www.abn.alabama.gov under the Education tab.

If a provider fails to meet criteria, what action does the Board take?

The Board may deny or withdraw approval of any provider or continuing education activity [610-X-10-.06(5)]. Grounds for withdrawal of approval include:

  1. Lack of qualified personnel for planning and conducting continuing education for nurses.
  2. Inadequate record maintenance.
  3. Fraud, deception, or misrepresentation relating to the educational program.
  4. Failure to comply with requests for documents, or submitting false, inaccurate, or incomplete evidence of continuing education programs conducted and certificates issued.
  5. Aiding or abetting a licensee who fails to meet the continuing education requirements by altering or falsifying certificates.

Can a program director be disciplined by the Board?

A continuing education program director who is a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse and fails to comply with the requirements in the rules shall be subject to disciplinary actions by the Board [610-X-10-.06(7)].

Does the Board conduct routine audits to determine provider compliance with criteria?

The Board may conduct an audit upon written complaint by any individual for failure of a provider to meet criteria for approval. The Board also conducts random audits of providers to determine compliance with criteria. [610-X-10-.07(5)].


EMAIL LISTSERV

The email LISTSERV sends emails to subscribers about important information pertaining to various subjects.

RN Nursing and LPN Nursing lists are only available to the nurse from within his/her My Profile page. The email LISTSERV delivers important email notifications of specific information such as renewal reminders. Licensed nurses are automatically included in email LISTSERV notifications of the specific license type, but may opt-out at any time.

Sign up to receive email updates on the following topics:
Chief Nursing Officers * School Nurses * CE Providers *
Lead School Nurses * AP Nursing * RN Programs * LPN Programs

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

CE Audit Frequently Asked Questions

Continuing Education Reporting and Audit FAQ

What information regarding continuing education is required for license renewal?

The Renewal process cannot be completed until documentation of at least twenty-four (24) contact hours of CE has been uploaded to your CE Record on the ABN website. Please follow the instructions provided prior to starting the Renewal process.

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What is an audit?

The Board conducts audits to determine compliance with requirements for continuing education for license renewal. An audit consists of a review of documentation of continuing education.  The nurse will receive a letter of audit within 30 days before the renewal period.    Nurses will be asked to submit records of continuing education activities/courses completed in the appropriate accrual period.  The Board reviews individual online CE records for all nurses selected for audit.

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What happens if records are not submitted on time?

Licensees failing to comply with requests for documents within the appropriate time must pay a late CE compliance fee. Current late CE compliance fees are:

  • 1st time: $150.00
  • 2nd time: $300.00
  • 3 or more times: $600.00

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What happens if records do not evidence compliance?

Nurses failing to meet continuing education requirements are subject to disciplinary action by the Board as outlined in the Alabama Board of Nursing Administrative Code, Chapter 610-X-8 and Chapter 610-X-10, pursuant to the Code of Alabama, 1975, Section 34-21-25. Failure to meet continuing education requirements shall be cause for the license to lapse.

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Are there circumstances where a nurse may be automatically selected for audit?

A nurse who fails to comply with requests for documents within the time specified or fails to evidence compliance will be selected for audit the subsequent renewal.

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What happens if the nurse does not respond to the continuing education audit?

A registered nurse or licensed practical nurse who fails to comply with reporting requirements of the audit, requests for documents, or submits false, inaccurate, or incomplete evidence of meeting continuing education requirements will be subject to disciplinary action by the Board.

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CE Frequently Asked Questions

Continuing Education FAQ

What is Continuing Education?

Rule 610-X-10-.01 (4) of the Alabama Board of Nursing Administrative Code defines continuing education as “planned, organized learning experiences designed to augment the knowledge,  skill, and ability to enhance nursing practice and therefore improve health care delivered to the public.”

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What content is acceptable as continuing education for license renewal?

Acceptable content (610-X-10-.03) must be beyond the basic educational level for entry into practice of the individual licensee and includes:

  • Clinical technology, procedures, and nursing implications.
  • Specialty areas of nursing practice.
  • Nursing practice related to care of the patient.
  • Administration, management, and supervision in health care delivery.
  • Social, legal, and ethical aspects of nursing.
  • Nursing education.
  • Nursing research, theory, and practice issues.
  • Quality improvement and management, accrediting standards, and processes.
  • Academic credit applicable to nursing that is earned from liberal arts, sciences, business, and general education courses obtained after initial licensure from an institution accredited by an educational accrediting body or that is earned in pursuit of a higher degree in nursing.
  • Professional conduct.

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Are there content requirements for continuing education?

Beginning October 1, 2002, as a part of the 24 Board-approved or Board-recognized continuing education contact hours for license renewal [610-X-4-.08]:

  1. Certified Registered Nurse Practitioners (CRNP) and Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM) with prescriptive authority shall earn six contact hours of pharmacology content specific to prescriptive practice in the approved area for collaborative practice.
  2. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) shall earn six contact hours of pharmacology.
  3. A registered nurse or licensed practical nurse licensed by examination during the earning period shall, for the first license renewal, earn four (4) contact hours of Board provided continuing education related to Board functions, the Nurse Practice Act, regulations, professional conduct, and accountability and one contact hour for each calendar month remaining in the earning period up to a maximum of 24 contact hours including the mandatory class.

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I need to take the mandatory class. I heard it was offered online. Where can I find this class?

Follow the outlined steps:

  1. Go to the Alabama Board of Nursing web site, www.abn.alabama.gov.
  2. After entering the site, select the Alabama Nursing Resource Center, then select the Nursing CE tab.
  3. Before selecting to view a class:
    • Test your system to determine readiness to view online courses.
    • Review Frequently Asked Questions, including system requirements.
  4. Choose the mandatory class by selecting the (+) next to it. You will be required to log in at this point. Log in requires your Alabama nursing license number and the last four digits of your social security number as your pin number.
  5. Select and view.
  6. If you are required to complete the class, you must view each segment of the class to earn the four (4.0) contact hours of continuing education.

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Can anyone take the class and receive credit or is it available only for nurses who must complete the class?

Any Alabama licensed nurse may view the online class and receive credit. If not licensed, you cannot receive credit.

You may view the classes multiple times, but credit hours will be earned for only one viewing. As sections are updated, you may receive credit hours for viewing the updated sections.

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How can I earn continuing education for license renewal?

Continuing education can be earned from activity(ies) provided or approved by an Alabama Board of Nursing approved provider of continuing education or a Board-recognized provider of continuing education.

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Will I receive credit for continuing education activities not obtained from a Board-approved provider?

Yes, if the continuing education is received from a recognized provider [610-X-10-.04(2)]. Continuing education must be from a Board-approved or Board-recognized provider.

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How many contact hours of continuing education are required for license renewal for registered nurses and licensed practical nurses?

To renew a license on active status to practice nursing in Alabama, registered nurses and licensed practical nurses must earn 24 contact hours from a Board-approved or Board -recognized continuing education provider [Chapter 610-X-4-.08]. If licensed by examination, reinstatement, or endorsement during the earning period the contact hours are prorated. A prorated chart is on the Board’s web site, www.abn.alabama.gov, under Continuing Education, then select Nurses.

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What is a contact hour?

A contact hour is a unit of measurement of organized learning experience lasting fifty (50) minutes [610-X-2-.10(5)]. When attending a conference, workshop, or course that lasts a full day, contact hours are calculated on the basis of time spent in class/at presentations. Time spent for breaks, lunches, and general meetings is not counted as part of the contact hours.

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What is the earning period for accruing continuing education?

Continuing Education Earning Period: Two-year period of time during which contact hours shall be accrued. The license renewal year for licensed practical nurses occurs every odd year. The license renewal year for registered nurses occurs every even year. Effective January 1, 2009, the earning period for registered nurses shall be the same as the license period. Effective January 1, 2008, the earning period for licensed practical nurses shall be the same as the license period.

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May I edit my Individual CE Record maintained on the ABN website?

Yes, nurses may view/edit their Individual CE Record at My Profile. Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers submit electronic records to the ABN of continuing education provided to licensed Alabama nurses [610-X-10-.06 (2) (e)]. The Individual CE Record reflects continuing education obtained from Board–approved providers (ABNP) for the current earning period.

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My individual online continuing education record does not list all the classes I have taken from Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers. What should I do?

Contact the continuing education provider. The provider will be able to tell you whether the class has been submitted to the Board. The provider will follow up with the ABN to resolve the problem if necessary.

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Will continuing education courses/activities attended in another state count toward license renewal?

Courses/activities attended by licensees in another state which are approved by another board of nursing are considered to be acceptable continuing education activities. The nurse will need to add these classes to his/her individual online continuing education record and upload the respective certificate(s) as proof of completion.

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Will the Board of Nursing accept continuing education credit granted by another profession?

The Board has specified selected categories of courses or activities which have undergone appropriate review by other state regulatory agencies and professions are acceptable. Examples of acceptable categories include, but are not limited to, courses approved by the Board of Dental Examiners, the Alabama State Bar, the Board of Pharmacy, the Board of Social Work Examiners, the Board of Education, the Alabama Nursing Home Administration Board, the Psychology Examiners Board, and courses classified as Category I Continuing Medical Education by the American Medical Association.

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What records/documents are required to substantiate earned continuing education contact hours? Who keeps the documents?

The nurse’s Individual CE Record on the ABN website. Certificates, transcripts, or other documentation of attendance at, or completion of, continuing education activities may substantiate contact hours for license renewal. Nurses are responsible for maintaining their own continuing education records for at least four (4) years after completion of the approved CE activity.

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How many contact hours of continuing education are required for reinstatement of a lapsed license?

Applicants who request reinstatement of a lapsed license must provide evidence of having earned 24 approved continuing education contact hours within the 24 months immediately preceding the date of the application. Nurses whose licenses are reinstated shall accrue for license renewal one contact hour for each calendar month remaining in the license period after reinstatement. Contact hours earned for reinstatement of a lapsed license cannot be used toward the continuing education requirement for the next license renewal period.

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Does the Board maintain a record of my continuing education?

Yes, nurses may view their individual online CE records at the Board’s web site, www.abn.alabama.gov. Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers submit electronic records to the Board of continuing education provided to licensed Alabama nurses [610-X-10-.06 (2) (d)].  The individual online CE record reflects continuing education obtained for current and previous renewal periods.

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What happens if a licensed nurse fails to meet continuing education requirements?

Failure to meet continuing education requirements shall be cause for the license to lapse.

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CE Provider Frequently Asked Questions

Continuing Education Provider FAQ

What is a Board-approved provider?

An individual, partnership, association, organization, educational institution, governmental agency, or licensed health care facility, including hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, home health agencies, or other organized health care facilities, offering continuing education for nurses that meet Board criteria for approval. [610-X-2-.10 (1)]

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How does an entity become approved by the Board of Nursing?

Approved providers must evidence capability to adhere to criteria indicative of quality continuing education activities for nurses. The criteria include specific requirements such as having an organized educational unit and a program director, policies and procedures which facilitate efficient operation of planned continuing education activities including maintenance of reports and records, and appropriate educational facilities, resources, and instructors. The complete criteria with guidelines are available through the Board office. [610-X-10-.06]

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What is a Board-recognized provider?

Board Recognized Continuing Education Provider: A national or regional agency, journal, Alabama regulatory agency or board, or another Board of Nursing, recognized by the Alabama Board of Nursing as providing or approving continuing education in accordance with criteria that are substantially the same as those required of Alabama Board of Nursing approved providers of continuing education. [610-X-2-.10(2)]

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Do I have to be a registered nurse to be a program director for a continuing education provider?

The program director may be a registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, or otherwise qualified individual. When the program director is not a registered nurse licensed in Alabama there shall be evidence of consultation by a registered nurse licensed in Alabama. [610-X-10-.06(2)(b)]

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I attended a program offered by a Board approved provider and the instructor was not well prepared. How can I report the incident?

Please share your comments with the contact person for the provider number and the Board. You can contact the continuing education nurse consultant at the Board. Contact information for Board staff is located at www.abn.alabama.gov under the Education tab.

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If a provider fails to meet criteria, what action does the Board take?

The Board may deny or withdraw approval of any provider or continuing education activity [610-X-10-.06(5)]. Grounds for withdrawal of approval include:

  1. Lack of qualified personnel for planning and conducting continuing education for nurses.
  2. Inadequate record maintenance.
  3. Fraud, deception, or misrepresentation relating to the educational program.
  4. Failure to comply with requests for documents, or submitting false, inaccurate, or incomplete evidence of continuing education programs conducted and certificates issued.
  5. Aiding or abetting a licensee who fails to meet the continuing education requirements by altering or falsifying certificates.

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Can a program director be disciplined by the Board?

A continuing education program director who is a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse and fails to comply with the requirements in the rules shall be subject to disciplinary actions by the Board [610-X-10-.06(7)].

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Does the Board conduct routine audits to determine provider compliance with criteria?

The Board may conduct an audit upon written complaint by any individual for failure of a provider to meet criteria for approval. The Board also conducts random audits of providers to determine compliance with criteria. [610-X-10-.07(5)].

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Mandatory CE Frequently Asked Questions

Mandatory Class FAQ

Who needs to complete the class?

Nurses licensed by examination on or after October 1, 2002, must complete four contact hours of Board-provided continuing education related to Board functions, the Nurse Practice Act, regulations, professional conduct, and accountability.

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When must the class be completed?

A registered nurse or licensed practical nurse licensed by examination during the earning period must complete the mandatory class before the first license renewal.

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How do I access the class online?

Follow the outlined steps:

  1. Go to the Alabama Board of Nursing web address, www.abn.alabama.gov.
  2. Select the Alabama Nursing Resource Center, then select the Nursing CE tab.
  3. Before selecting to view the class you need to view Frequently Asked Questions, including system requirements.
  4. Now select view current CE courses offered by ABN. You will be required to log in at this point.
  5. Select and review all segments.
  6. You must view each segment of the class to earn the 4.0 contact hours of continuing education. No partial credit will be awarded.
  7. If you have questions regarding content, contact joyce.jeter@abn.alabama.gov.  For technical assistance, contact richard.boyette@abn.alabama.gov.

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If I viewed the class by video prior to implementation of the online class May 8, 2006, can I view the class again for credit?

Yes, you can view the online class and receive credit, as this is an update. You will receive credit for this viewing only once. You can view the online class multiple time, but credit hours will be earned for only one viewing.

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If I viewed the mandatory class online, can I view the class again during another earning period for credit?

You may repeat the class any time, but you will not receive additional credit. As portions of the class are updated as indicated in the Table of Contents, you may view the updated section(s) and receive credit.

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How will I know that I have received credit for the class?

You will be able to check your online individual CE record when you have completed the class and verify the information. You can access your online individual CE record under My Profile at the Board’s web site www.abn.alabama.gov.

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CONTACT CONTINUING EDUCATION

Continuing Education Contact Info

ABN Physical Address

RSA Plaza, Suite 250
770 Washington Ave.
Montgomery, AL 36104

ABN Mailing Address

Alabama Board of Nursing
P.O. Box 303900
Montgomery, AL 36130-3900

ABN Contact Info

Phone: 1-800-656-5318Phone: 1-334-293-5201

 Web: www.abn.alabama.gov

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