The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) requires 30 continuing education credits (CME) every three years. Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI) requires 36 credits every three years.
There are several ways to get CME’s for free, and there are many opportunities inside the ultrasound societies to earn CME’s. I have compiled not a complete list but I think a pretty comprehensive list of options.
Institute for Advanced Medical Education – IAME Online CME Courses
The Institute for Advanced Medical Education offers a great deal of paid CME courses and a few free online CME courses (usually at the bottom of the page under applied radiology). These are not ultrasound specific and include areas such as MRA, Digital Breast Tomosynthesis part 1 and 2, Cardiac CT, etc. The paid CME’s are available in Vascular, OB-GYN, Physics, Abdominal Imaging, etc. The cost ranges from $25 for one credit to 10 credits for $95. While they offer CME’s in a wide range of modalities the IAME may not be the best value when it comes to total cost. http://www.appliedradiology.org/courses.aspx
The #1 mobile platform for U.S. Clinicians boasting over 4 million users who can access via iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire. By downloading the Medscape App you can earn free CME credits. The topics are broken up into four categories: Clinical briefs, Knowledge and Practice, Patient Cases and Journal Articles. Medscape Education is the leading destination for continuous professional development comprising more than 30 specialty-focused websites. Credits range from 0.25 to 2.0 credits AMA PRA credits.
American College of Radiology (ACR)
ACR members ($115-$850) have access to a number of free CME activities, monthly Journal of the American College of Radiology CME articles, daily cases, self-assessment tests and ethics/professionalism online modules. Each completed activity earns one CME credit. Membership is limited to: Active Board Certified Radiologist – $850, Associate (not board-certified) – $850, International – $335, International member-in-training – $115, Allied health/MRI scientist – $230, Physicist – $230, Canadian member (non-physicist) – $425. The ACR does not have a membership for sonographers unless you are also hold the ARRT credential. The cost of membership is higher than other sonographer or multi-disciplinary societies.
“The Association for Medical Ultrasound” American Institute of Ultrasound In Medicine (AIUM)
AIUM members have access to discount and a free CME courses through the organization.
Included in your membership is the Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine. There is CME, self-study tests, annual convention, post-graduate courses, web-based seminars, practice guidelines, and a safety online test.
Membership cost the following:
United States Canada/Mexico International
Student/resident/fellow* $25 $70 $100
First-year career $50 $95 $125
Second-year career $100 $145 $175
General member, physician $295 $340 $370
General member, non-physician $155 $200 $230
Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (SDMS)
The SDMS is a professional organization for sonography professionals. The SDMS tracks all SDMS CME credits through the SDMS CME Tracker. Completed credits are transferred to the ARDMS daily, Monday through Friday. CCI and the ARRT do not participate in the CME Tracker. You can earn up to 95 CME credits free through the Journal of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (Free with membership). The SDMS also provides webinars, SDMS conference, and offers other benefits such as the salary report.
Annual membership dues are established each year by the SDMS Board of Directors. The current dues structure is represented below:
Membership Category United States & International
Student $45 USD
Active, Associate, or Supporting $160 USD
Advanced Practice Sonographer $197 USD
Corporate/Business/Institutional $495 USD
American Society of Echocardiography (ASE)
The ASE is a professional organization for practitioners who are involved in echocardiography. The organization has three levels of membership based on experience and status. As far as CME’s are concerned you can attend regional meetings, start your own meetings or earn CME’s through ASEUniversity. You may also purchase CME’s as a non-member at a rate of $25 an hour. ASE does report CME’s to both the ARDMS and CCI. Membership Fee: $60-$275 Details
Society for Vascular Ultrasound (SVU)
SVU’s diverse membership includes vascular technologists, surgeons, cardiologists, radiologists, physicians, sonographers, cardiac sonographers, vascular lab technical directors and other allied healthcare professionals. Members have immediate access to 36 CME’s and unlimited live and on-demand webinars. Starting in 2014 the Journal for Vascular Ultrasound (JVU) will offer 12 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits. The SVU is a tremendous value and %20 of the dues goes toward advocacy. The SVU also has loads of professional information via UConnect.
Regular Membership – Excludes physicians $145
International Membership (Outside USA $ Canada) $150
Physician Membership (All) $245
Resident/Fellows Membership $95
Student Membership $25
Student Transitional Membership $60
Retired/Disables Membership $45
There are plenty of other places to find CME’s. You may wish to start your own CME program through one of these organizations. There are also many continuing medical education opportunities to attend such as Gulf Coast Ultrasound Institute, Keith Mauney and Associates, Pacific Vascular, to name a few. Of course Registered Vascular Solutions offers on site hands on vascular ultrasound continuing medical education courses.