Hi everyone, and welcome to Nurse Code!

This is the most detailed article that describes and explains everything you need to know about Nurse Practitioner continuing education.

This article will help you understand Nurse Practitioner continuing education requirements, options, and the available resources out there.

At the end of reading this, you’ll have a thorough understanding of how to obtain Continuing Education Units as a Nurse Practitioner.

We’ll cover:

  • Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education options
  • Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education requirements
  • General resources for Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education
  • NP Continuing Education resources by specialty area

Let’s get started!

Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education Options

Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education Options

Continuing education ensures Nurse Practitioners keep up with the ever-evolving healthcare industry.

Since these professionals focus on providing the best possible care for patients, they must be up-to-date with the latest medical technology, treatment options, diseases, and pharmaceuticals.

The CE programs provide NPs with the courses they need to improve their skills.

Nurse Practitioners can earn the continuing education units through different avenues.

They can opt for review manuals, study groups, seminars, or web courses.

Symposiums, conferences, live sessions, and publications are also acceptable options for earning CEUs.

These channels prepare NPs for the continuing education certification exam and the contact hours required to maintain licensure and certifications.

Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education Requirements

Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education Requirements

Each state has its continuing education requirements for Nurse Practitioners.

Most of them stipulate the contact hours and duration to complete them.

And so, it’s important that an NP contacts their state board of nursing for the specific CEU requirements.

Since specialization certifications also require renewal, it’s also in an NP’s best interest to gather information from the certifying organization on the recertification requirements.

The next step is to ensure that whichever CE course one settles for it’s accredited by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) or the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).

AANP accredited continuing education programs meet CEU requirements for all the state boards of nursing in the country.

You’ll also find that most state boards of nursing accept ANCC CEU accredited courses.

With that said, let’s delve into the resources you can leverage to meet your CE credits.

General Resources for Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education

General Resources for Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education

Here is a list of organizations with CE programs that can provide you with the resources you need to maintain your state licensure:

American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)

The one good thing that makes AANP stand out among the other CE providers is that its CE courses are accepted by all regulatory bodies and states board of nursing.

Nurse Practitioners who are AANP members have access to the AANP CE center, which has over 100 continuing education resources.

The in-house resources include webinars, case studies, test-based articles, and videos.

As members complete the different materials, they can use the AANP CE tracker to track their progress.

Moreover, the tracking system allows AANP members to upload certifications from other organizations.

Apart from the online resources, NP students can also attend the AANP conferences and live events.

The organization reveals the contact hours you can earn from attending its conferences, which helps students meet the AANP CEU requirements.

American Nurses Association (ANA)

The American Nurses Association provides several opportunities for Nurse Practitioners to meet their state licensure and specialization certification.

Their CE courses include online courses and webinars.

The topic covered within the courses includes Nurse leadership, nursing informatics, pharmacology, mindfulness, and creativity in nursing.

Depending on one’s population focus, they can also pursue topics in their specialty area.

Advanced Practice Education Associates (APEA)

The APEA CE course is accredited by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.

The APEA has a continuing education library, CareOnPoint, which offers paid and free courses.

The online resource center has several courses in different formats, including clinical briefs, videos, live courses, reference tools, and audio.

Nurse Practitioners can also choose specific specialization continuing education courses.

PRIME Education

PRIME Education has accreditation from both ANCC and AANP.

The APRN continuing education courses cover chronic disease management, care coordination, practice management, infectious disease, and patient education.

The course formats are varied.

NP students can choose online sessions, virtual symposiums, or virtual meetings.

They can also opt for print resources.

Most of the PRIME Education resources are free.

Barkley & Associates (B&A)

B&A’s continuing education courses are accredited by AANP and approved by the State of California.

The organization offers a wide range of CE for the different NP specialties.

They have continuing education courses for Family Nurse Practitioners, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners, Adult Primary Care NPs, Emergency NPs, Acute Care NPs, Pediatric NPs, and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioners.

Apart from the NP CE courses, B&A also offers NPs specialization certifications mentioned above.

NPs who want to renew their specialty certification through examination can pursue these programs.

The certification courses are also open for Registered Nurses or NPs who want to specialize.

Additionally, the programs can also go towards continuing education credits for pharmacology.

B&A programs include live sessions, online classes, and audio CDs.

Apart from NP programs, Barkley and Associated also offer review books.

B&A is particularly known for its advanced pharmacology review course.

Nurse Practitioner Associates for Continuing Education (NPACE)

NPACE was famous for its conferences which also awarded CEUs.

The conferences allowed NP students to interact with education providers, pharmaceuticals, and medical equipment.

The in-person conferences have since shifted online.

So, all the interactions are virtual.

NPACE CE courses are accredited by ANCC.

Its NP CEs are aimed at NPs working in primary care.

All the learning resources are found on the one-stop portal, the myCME.

Healthcare professionals can access primary care, practice management, and pharmacology courses on the portal.

The Nurse Practitioner Associates for Continuing Education also has free CEs in diabetes, influenza, and depression.

NetCE Continuing Education

NetCe Continuing Education offers CE both in the US and outside.

It organizes Nurse Practitioner CEU programs for several specialty areas, including but not limited to pediatrics, mental health, community health, geriatrics, women’s health, and pharmacology.

Its continuing education courses are paid for.

Once an NP student pays, they access the CE exam and several study resources.

Fitzgerald Health Education Association (FHEA)

FHEA is yet another Nurse Practitioner organization that is accredited by AANP.

FHEA is a continuing education center dedicated explicitly to NPs CE.

The CE courses can be taken as individual programs or bundled together at a subsidized cost.

Learners can opt for CD-based lessons, online sessions, or live streams.

The NP CE course delves deep into different topics, including chest pain evaluation, pain management, and sleep medications, among others.

NP Continuing Education Resources by Speciality Area

NP Continuing Education Resources by Speciality Area

Let’s now shift our focus to Nurse Practitioner organizations that provide CE programs for the different population focus areas:



Pri-med provides Nurse Practitioner continuing education to FNPs.

The organization is accredited by AANP.

It gives NP students the option to choose from medical conferences, online education, or CME primary care podcast.

The online course covers a healthy lifestyle, diabetes, infectious diseases, pain management, LGBTQ health, and allergies.

On the other hand, the conference allows NP to meet in person with other healthcare providers and share their perspectives on primary care.

Lastly, the podcast is broken down into episodes that candidates can listen to and earn CE.


Gerontology Advanced Practice Nurses Association (GAPNA)

Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioners seeking to pursue CEUs with GAPNA have two options, sign up for online classes or attend the annual conference.

If you choose the annual conference, there are different price points depending on how you want to earn your CEUs.

Suppose you are a GAPNA member.

You’ll get a discount for any of the price points you choose.

The topics covered in the conferences vary every year.

The continuing education online course focuses on professional issues of AGNP, dementia, psychosocial issues, cardiovascular health, pharmacology, and several other topics.


National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP)

NAPNAP CEs revolve around infants, children, and adolescents.

Through their portal, PedsCE, NPs can earn contact hours through topics in professional issues, acute care, mental health, primary care, and pharmacology.

NAPNAP also has a podcast, Teampeds Talk, which NPs can listen to earn contact hours toward their CE.


National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN)

The NANN has an annual conference that Neonatal NP can attend to earn credit units.

It is also a comprehensive toolkit that contains guidelines, modules, papers, and webinars.

These two options are paid for.

But NANN members are eligible for discounts.

The organization also has some resources that it offers its members for free.

The Academy of Neonatal Nursing (ANN)

ANN has a digital platform with dozens of continuing education resources.

It also holds conferences where NPPs can earn CEUs.

Additionally, the ANNMinuteCE program caters to NNPs on the go who want to meet the continuing education credits.

Psychiatric Mental Health

American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA)

APNA has an eLearning center with loads of CE resources.

PMHNP can choose webinars, ebooks, or podcast recordings.

They can also opt for live training or conferences.

There’s also the option of free CEs for APNA members and non-members.

Association of Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurses (AAPPN)

AAPPN has an online platform where any PMHNP can access online continuing education resources.

The topics covered include starting a private practice, billing, and telehealth practices, among others.

Apart from the online course, Nurse Practitioners can attend the AAPPN conference and earn credits.

Women’s Health

Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health (NPWH)

WHNP can choose online courses or live events to earn their continuing education credits.

If you opt for online courses, NPWH has an e-learning portal that offers courses on sexual health, equity, assessment, practice considerations, and evaluations.

NPWH also has annual conferences where WHNP can earn four contact hours towards continuing education requirements.

NPWH members stand to get discounts for online classes and conference registration.

Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN)

AWHONN supports both neonatal NPs and Women’s Health NPs towards CE.

With AWHONN, one can opt for bundled courses or individual courses.

The cost will depend on the program you’ve settled for.

The topics covered online include c-section, abortion, psychiatric ovarian syndrome, and more.


American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM)

Nurse-Midwives can pursue surgical assistance, ultrasound education, mental health, and prevention of fetal alcohol syndrome.

These courses are based online.

Apart from the courses, one can attend the annual conferences to learn, network with other Nurse-midwives and interact with experts while still earning CEUs.


conclusion on what is a Nurse Practitioner

Nurse Practitioner continuing education is an important aspect of an NP career.

Nurse Practitioners must be up to speed with the new development in the healthcare industry to improve their clinical practice and provide the best patient care.

Additionally, continuing education is a mandatory requirement for advanced Nurse Practitioners to maintain their licensure and certifications.

That said, we hope you find the right continuing education provider to maintain your certification and license.


FAQs on Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education

Do Nurse Practitioners need continuing education?

Yes. Each state has a specific number of contact hours that NPs must complete to remain licensed. Additionally, certification agencies also require their NP to maintain their certifications through CE. Continuing education helps NPs stay current in healthcare matters and provide quality patient care.

How long is ANCC certification good for?

The American Nurses Credentialing center NP certification lasts five years. Within this period, NPs must meet the continuing education requirements. ANCC accredited NPs may complete CE through academic courses, publications or research, preceptorship, professional services, assessments, and presentations or lectures. NPs must show proof of the completed CEUs.

How many CE hours do you need for a Nurse Practitioner?

The contact hours required depends on the certifying agency and the state. For example, AANPCB requires Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners to complete 1,000 clinical hours and 75 contact hours in activities related to the specialty area every five years. The state of Alabama requires 24 CE hours every two years.

What are Nurse Practitioner competencies?

The core competencies for Nurse Practitioners include:
– Technology and information literacy
– Scientific foundation
– Quality
– Health delivery system
– Leadership
– Independence practice
– Ethics
– Practice inquiry
The Nurse Practitioner curriculum is developed around these core competencies.

What is the CE requirement for California Nurse Practitioners?

In California, Nurse Practitioners must complete 30 CE hours every two years. Three of those hours must in on schedule II controlled substances. The continuing education units must be earned from an accredited provider approved by the California Board of Nursing.

What is the main purpose of CE for Nurse Practitioners?

The main purpose of continuing education for NPs is to keep their knowledge up-to-date. State Board of Nursing and certification bodies require NPs to maintain their credentials through CE. The professional development courses towards meeting the contact hours allow NPs to learn from a range of topics.

What kind of continuing education do NPs need?

There are different options for Nurse Practitioners continuing education. NPs can opt for online courses, conferences, live sessions, webinars, or podcasts, just to mention a few. The key is to enroll in an accredited program approved by their state board of nursing.

What is the difference between CE and CME?

Continuing education (CE) is a crucial aspect of a nursing career. All licensed medical professionals are required to maintain their licensure through CE. Continuing Medical Education is specifically for Physicians. CME requires Physicians to maintain their license through education programs and training. CME falls under continuing education.

What is the difference between accredited and non-accredited continuing education?

Accredited continuing education is recognized nationally. Non-accredited programs are not recognized. Hence, your recertification will not be recognized by your state and employer. Accredited CEs offer comprehensive programs that meet the set standards. That’s why states required their NPs to only enroll in accredited programs.

What does C mean after Nurse Practitioner?

The C in a Nurse Practitioner designation means the NP earned their board certification from the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), FNP-C, AGNP-C, etc. Nurse Practitioners certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) have BC in their designation, FNP-BC, AGNP-BC, and so forth.


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