Continuing Education Requirement for Optometry as enacted in 2022 by House Bill 5500, section 18 (Public Act 22-58):
Sec. 18. Subsection (c) of section 20-132a of the 2022 supplement to the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):
(c) (1) Except as provided in this section, a licensee who is actively engaged in the practice of optometry shall earn a minimum of twenty hours of continuing education each registration period. The subject matter for continuing education shall reflect the professional needs of the licensee in order to meet the health care needs of the public, and shall include (A) not less than six hours in any of the following areas: Pathology, detection of diabetes and ocular treatment; and (B) not less than six hours in treatment as it applies to the use of ocular agents T.
(2) Coursework shall be provided in the following manner: (A) Not less than ten hours shall be earned through direct, live instruction that the licensee physically attends; (B) not more than ten hours shall be earned through synchronous online education with opportunities for live interaction; (C) not more than five hours shall be earned through asynchronous online education, distance learning or home study; and (D) not more than six hours shall be in practice management. For the purposes of this subdivision, "synchronous online education" means live online classes that are conducted in real time and "asynchronous online education" means a program where the instructor, learner and other participants are not engaged in the learning process at the same time, there is no real-time interaction between participants and instructors and the educational content is created and made available for later consumption.
(3) Qualifying continuing education activities include, but are not limited to, courses offered or approved by the Council on Optometric Practitioner Education of the Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry, the American Optometric Association or state or local optometry associations and societies that are affiliated with the American Optometric Association, a hospital or other health care institution, a school or college of optometry or other institution of higher education accredited or recognized by the Council on Optometric Practitioner Education or the American Optometric Association, a state or local health department, or a national, state or local medical association.
Summary of the provision by the Office of Legislative Research:
§ 18 — CONTINUING EDUCATION (CE) FOR OPTOMETRISTS
Explicitly allows online CE classes; increases, from six to 10, the number of CE credit hours that can be earned without attending in-person. By law, optometrists must earn at least 20 hours of CE during each annual registration period. Prior law allowed up to six CE hours to be earned through a home study or distance learning program. The act specifies that online education is an acceptable way to earn CE credit. The act increases to 10 hours the amount of CE credit that optometrists may earn through courses that are not in-person. But it limits to (1) five hours the amount of CE credit that may be earned through asynchronous online education, distance learning, or home study programs and (2) 10 hours the amount of CE credit that may be earned though synchronous online education that includes opportunities for live instruction. Under the act, “synchronous online education” is a live, online class conducted in real time. “Asynchronous online education” is a program in which (1) the instructor, learner, and other participants are not engaged in the learning process at the same time; (2) there is no real-time interaction between participants and instructors; and (3) the educational content is created and made available for later consumption.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Upon passage (May 23, 2022)