Continuing Education Provider Suggested Protocol

California Veterinary
Medical Association


Suggested Protocol

Statutorily Approved Providers*:

The following is taken directly from the CVMA sponsored legislation that established a group of CE providers referred to as “Statutorily Approved Providers.”

(b) (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, continuing education hours shall be earned by attending courses relevant to veterinary medicine and sponsored or cosponsored by any of the following:

(A) American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited veterinary medical colleges.

(B) Accredited colleges or universities offering programs relevant to veterinary medicine.

(C) The American Veterinary Medical Association.

(D) American Veterinary Medical Association recognized specialty or affiliated allied groups.

(E) American Veterinary Medical Association’s affiliated state veterinary medical associations.

(F) Nonprofit annual conferences established in conjunction with state veterinary medical associations.

(G) Educational organizations affiliated with the American Veterinary Medical Association or its state affiliated veterinary medical associations.

(H) Local veterinary medical associations affiliated with the California Veterinary Medical Association.

(I) Federal, state, or local government agencies.

(J) Providers accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) or approved by the American Medical Association (AMA), providers recognized by the American Dental Association Continuing Education Recognition Program (ADA CERP), and AMA or ADA affiliated state, local, and specialty organizations.

For a detailed listing of this group, see Appendix I.

What Does This Mean?

The intent of the CVMA sponsored legislation was to simplify the CE delivery process. The original legislation that implemented mandatory CE as a prerequisite to re-licensure was not meant to complicate the CE delivery system nor to require a complicated approval process for CE providers. The new legislation states that the Statutorily Approved Providers listed above can continue to provide CE that will be accepted toward the mandatory 36 hours required for re-licensure without seeking approval from any agency. They must however, take steps to assure the quality of the CE they present. If inappropriate CE programs are presented for credit, the VMB can take steps to withdraw the pre-approved status. Therefore all Statutorily Approved Providers must follow the steps outlined in the following section. These requirements apply to presentations where the approved provider is on site and actively participates in the CE presentation. For presentations where the approved provider is not on site and actively involved in the presentation, see the section on Co-sponsorship of CE.


1)     Establish a set of “Written Educational Goals.

a)     Suggested Written Educational Goals Statement: “The content of continuing education courses sponsored by our organization shall reflect the needs of the veterinarian, build upon the standards for practice and courses as found in the curricula of accredited schools of veterinary medicine and contain information that is relevant to the practice of veterinary medicine. Courses shall be related to the scientific knowledge and/or technical skills required for the practice of veterinary medicine or be related to direct and/or indirect patient/client care. Courses that are primarily intended to promote the use of a commercial product or service shall not be deemed relevant to veterinary medicine.”

b)     CVMA suggests that this statement be maintained in your permanent records.

2)     Determine Acceptability of proposed CE.

a)     The subject of the presentation should be “relevant to veterinary medicine.”

i)       Who determines if the presentation is relevant? The approved provider.

ii)      Presentations subsidized by commercial firms such as manufacturers and distributors are acceptable as long as the presentations are not primarily intended to promote a product or service.

iii)    Business related topics relevant to veterinary medicine are acceptable, and in fact an individual can claim up to 24 hours (of the required 36) of business related CE. Topics in this area might include record keeping, regulatory and legal issues.

iv)    Approved Providers can sponsor CE that would not qualify for license renewal purposes, but these presentations should be identified as non-qualifying CE prior to presentation. Certificates of Attendance should not be provided for these presentations.

b)     The speaker should be qualified by virtue of education and/or experience.

3)     Determine the number of hours of credit – Must be done in advance.

a)     One-hour minimum

i)       50 minutes presentation time (Minimum).

ii)      Ten-minute break allowed for each hour.

b)     ½ hour increments thereafter

4)     Provide Certificate of Attendance. (See Sample Certificates)

a)     Include Local VMA or Organization Information (Name, address etc)

b)     Contact Name/Title (CE Director, CE Chair, VP, …)

c)     Date of Presentation

d)     Presentation Information

i)       Topic

ii)      Speaker

iii)    Hours of Credit Earned

iv)    Maximum CE Units Attainable

(1)   By an individual if they attend all hours possible.

e)     Signature of CE Director, CE Chair, VP or other responsible organization representative.

f)       For multi-track formats, a single certificate with space for the attendee to fill in actual attendance at specific lectures may be acceptable. (See sample certificate.)

5)     Keep Records of Attendance and CE Provided

a)     Registration Roster

i)       For multi-track formats, it is CVMA’s understanding that a record of attendance at each individual presentation is not required.

b)     Sign-up sheets or roll-call records are excellent documentation of attendance.

Co-sponsorship of CE:

Statutorily Approved Providers can “co-sponsor” a CE event even if they are not physically involved in the CE delivery process. For example, a specialty practice may want to conduct CE, but not in conjunction with a local VMA meeting. If the group did not wish to apply to become an approved CE provider on their own, they could ask a Statutorily Approved Provider (such as a local VMA) to co-sponsor the event. The statutorily approved provider would be responsible for making sure that the CE presentations are acceptable as listed above as well as making sure all record keeping and certificate requirements are met. As a reminder, a co-sponsor arrangement is not required when presentations are made at local VMA meetings or seminars/conferences organized by local VMAs or their chapters.

Co-sponsorship agreements should be used sparingly. Statutorily approved providers should not use this as a means of becoming a CE approval body. Remember that the statutorily approved provider is responsible for making sure that all CE put on by the “co-sponsors” meets minimum requirements. Also keep in mind that the VMB can take steps to withdraw the statutorily approved provider’s pre-approved status if problems occur.

View a sample Co-sponsorship Agreement here.

Note: Although this material is written specifically for local veterinary medical associations, the information is applicable to all Statutorily Approved Providers.

© 2022 California Veterinary Medical Association

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