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April 16, 2012
Darryl Geddes 315 464-4828

Upstate partners with CNYAHEC for web-based CME program

Upstate Medical University will provide online access to its continuing medical education (CME) courses and programs to healthcare providers throughout Upstate New York.

Previously, healthcare providers could only earn CME credits by attending educational sessions, held at Upstate’s Syracuse campus or elsewhere in the region. Upstate is the only provider of continuing medical education in Central New York to be directly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME).

Under an agreement with the Central New York Area Health Education Center (CNYAHEC), Upstate’s CME content will be accessible to physicians, nurses and other healthcare programs through EduCare CE, a web-based continuing education program. The program presents the possibility of supporting thousands of Upstate New York-area healthcare professionals who may choose to fulfill their continuing education requirements through EduCare CE because of its emphasis on content originating from regional providers.

When CNYAHEC went looking for a partner for this venture, officials went directly to Upstate.

“Upstate’s continuing medical education content is first rate, and Upstate already offers and promotes many services throughout Upstate New York, so it made sense to seek out the university’s support and expertise on this key project,” said John Hughes, executive director of CNYAHEC. “When we asked Upstate to join us in the project, there was no hesitation on their part.”

Upstate officials were quick to say yes.

“We’re pleased to be a part of this project that benefits the individual in small doctor’s office in a rural area as healthcare providers in a large physician practice in an Upstate city,” said Upstate President David R. Smith, MD. “It’s a tremendous opportunity for us that extends our educational mission more broadly throughout Upstate New York.”

Recent surveys have found that an increasing number of other health professionals rely on the Internet for continuing education services. Upstate has recognized that the costs of travel and time away from the practice will become increasingly important considerations in the selection of educational options for physicians, nurses and other providers.

In addition to providing existing content from Upstate’s continuing medical education programs, CNYAHEC says Upstate will design content expressly for EduCare CE, including courses on nursing leadership. When possible, courses will also be streamed live on the Internet. Other area healthcare organizations, such as Cayuga Medical Center, also provide some content.

To take a course on EduCare CE, healthcare providers would do everything online, from registration, payment to viewing and interacting with content.

Healthcare providers are required to take continuing medical education courses to maintain competence and learn of innovations that may impact their practice. Such content is developed, and delivered by faculty experts.

“Essentially this agreement with Upstate extends its medical expertise more broadly throughout the region, and helps us achieve our goals of promoting and supplying information that enhances healthcare workforce development,” said Hughes of CNYAHEC.

CNYAHEC, part of both the New York State and national AHEC system, is a non-profit health workforce development organization located in Cortland, NY. Its mission is to promote improvements in the supply, training, development and distribution of health professionals in a 14-county area of Central New York.

Caption: John Hughes, executive director of the Central New York Area Health Center, left, shakes hands with Upstate Medical University President David R. Smith, MD, after signing an agreement that makes Upstate a provider of online continuing medical education for healthcare providers throughout Upstate New York through EduCare CE, a web-based content provider.

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