American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

States Altering Licensing Requirements at-a-Glance

The Certification, Validation, and Accreditation Section of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Division of Education has created a list of states that have altered license renewal schedules and/or Continuing Medical Education (CME) requirements as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The following information has been extracted from web pages of various licensing authorities for your convenience. If your state does not appear in the list below, it is because we have no information from your state at this time. The ACS encourages members to continue to check directly with their licensing board for additional COVID-19 updates.

State COVID-19 Emergency Response Altered License
Renewal Schedules and/or CME Requirements

ALABAMA
  • The Board and Commission recognize the difficulty licensees may have meeting the annual continuing medical education requirement in 2020 due to the public health emergency. Consequently, all licensees (MD/DO/PA/AA) are exempt for 2020 from the annual requirement to earn 25 credits for license renewal, and no compliance audit for these 2020 credits will be conducted.
  • Credits earned in 2020 may not be rolled over to 2021. to meet the 2022 license renewal requirement.
  • In determining compliance with the controlled substances CME requirements for ACSCs (two credits biennially) and QACSCs (four credits biennially), the Board will extend the two-year period to include 2020. If your two-year period was 2019-2020, it is now 2019-2021. If it was 2020-2021, it is now 2020-2022. Qualifying controlled substances CME credits earned in 2020 may be used to comply with the biennial requirement.
ALASKA
  • Due to the surge in COVID-19 cases and an increase in licensing volume, the division has extended the regular licensing period for Medical Board licensee through April 1, 2021. Please submit your renewal application as soon as possible to allow ample time for processing.
  • The Alaska State Medical Board approved a fifty percent reduction of CME requirement for MD, DO, DPM, and paramedics for the 2019-2020 licensing period.

ARIZONA

  • State of Arizona Executive Order 2020-17 defers requirements to renew licenses if the renewals cannot be completed online. Physicians are able to renew Arizona licenses online. There is no renewal extension for physicians at this time.

CALIFORNIA

  • The Continuing Medical Education (CME) renewal requirements for licenses that expire between January 1, 2021 and February 28, 2021 have been deferred for six months. Upon expiration of the six-month deferral period, the licensee must have completed the CME requirements. In order to receive the CME waiver at the time of renewal, a physician must submit a complete renewal application and pay the required fees. There are no additional steps.
  • These temporary waivers do not relieve such individuals from timely complying with any other renewal requirements, including completing and submitting the required renewal forms to the governing licensing agency.
COLORADO
  • A provider with an expired or lapsed license, registration, or certification may operate within a 60-day grace period without being subject to penalties or fines. Note: Medical professionals must be aware of reimbursement and liability concerns beyond the date of license expiration.

CONNECTICUT
CME

  • If your license was active on or after March 30, 2020, your license will not expire during the COVID-19 civil preparedness emergency. You will be able to renew your license at any time now and during the six-month period following the date of the resumption of the renewal requirements.
  • Under Executive Order 7DD, the continuing education requirements for providers with annual continuing education requirements are suspended for a period of (1) year.

DELAWARE

  • When completing your on-line renewal, the continuing education attestation page will ask if you have been unable to complete your required continuing education due to the Governor’s declared state of emergency. Any licensee who attests that s/he has had difficulty completing CEs before renewal due to the declared state of emergency will be immediately granted additional time to complete their CEs. If the declared state of emergency has impacted your ability to complete your CEs, you will be given until sixty days after the lifting of the state of emergency to complete your CEs for this renewal cycle.
  • The eleventh extension of the State of Emergency was ratified on January 23, 2021.

FLORIDA (MD)

FLORIDA (DO) RENEWAL

FLORIDA (DO) CME

  • The January 31, 2021 license renewal deadline for Medical Doctors is extended to March 31, 2021.
  • The March 31, 2021 license renewal deadline for Osteopathic Physicians is extended to May 31, 2021.
  • The Florida Board of Osteopathic Medicine waived the requirement for live participatory attendance for certain CE courses for the 2018-2020 biennium.
  • Osteopathic physicians may complete the following continuing medical education requirements via distance learning: Florida Laws/and Rules; Professional and Medical Ethics; and, Prevention of Medical Errors.

GUAM

  • All licensing requirements, permits or fees required by law, rule, regulation for healthcare providers are waived and such waiver will continue in effect until the public health emergency terminates.

IDAHO

  • The 2020 spring license renewal period has been extended through October 2020.
  • During the COVID-19 response, the Board may waive or extend the time to complete CME credits required for licensure renewal.

ILLINOIS

  • The state has automatically extended licenses through September 30, 2020.

IOWA

  • All license renewal requirements and deadlines are suspended during the period of this health emergency. If a licensee had an active medical license on March 22, 2020, the expiration date will be automatically extended for the duration of this health emergency.
  • All requirements for in-person continuing medical education and all deadlines and other requirements for continuing medical education that are unable to be satisfied due to the health emergency, are temporarily suspended during the period of this health emergency. If a licensee is unable to complete the required continuing medical education required for renewal of their Iowa medical license due to the health emergency, they should note that on their next renewal application. 
  • Iowa State of Emergency has been extended to April 4, 2021.

KANSAS
CME

  • All state agencies shall extend renewal deadlines for any professional license that has or will expire during this disaster declaration and for 90 days after it expires.
  • The Board is extending continuing education deadlines until 90 days following the termination of the State of Disaster Emergency declaration for licensees who were unable to obtain the required continuing education due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Licensees currently in the renewal process will certify either that you have completed the required CEs, or, if you have not yet completed them, that you understand you are required by law to complete them within 90 days following termination of the State of Disaster Emergency declaration. The Board will verify compliance by auditing an undetermined percentage of renewal applications.  
  • The State of Emergency has been extended through March 31, 2021.

LOUISIANA

MAINE

  • The governor has issued an order that keeps licenses from expiring or needing to be renewed for 30 days after the end of declaration of the emergency (including CME requirements).
  • The State of Emergency was extended to March 18, 2021.

MARYLAND

  • All physicians whose licenses have or will come up for renewal during the State of Emergency, which was declared on March 5, 2020, shall have their renewal date extended until 30 days after the end of the Emergency.

MASSACHUSETTS

  • On March 10, 2020, a State of Emergency in Massachusetts was declared.
  • For the duration of this state of emergency and until December 31, 2021, the continuing medical education (CME) requirement for physicians is suspended.
  • Any physician with a CME requirement whose license is due for renewal on April 2, 2020 through and including Dec. 31, 2021 will not be required to complete any CME requirement.

MICHIGAN

  • Effective immediately and continuing through April 14, 2020 at 11:59 pm, the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) may renew a license to practice, regardless of whether the licensee has satisfied the continuing education requirement applicable to their license.
  • Effective immediately and continuing through April 14, 2020 at 11:59 pm, LARA may recognize hours worked responding to the COVID-19 emergency as hours toward continuing education courses or programs required for licensure.
  • The Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs may renew a license to practice regardless of whether the licensee has satisfied the continuing medical education requirement.

MINNESOTA

  • The Minnesota health-related licensing boards are authorized to defer continuing education requirements until the first full reporting cycle following the termination of the peacetime emergency declared by Executive Oder 20-01. It is important to note the continuing education requirements are deferred and NOT waived.
  • State of Emergency extended to March 15, 2021.

MISSISSIPPI

  • The June 30, 2020 Continuing Medical Education (CME) requirement has been extended to December 31, 2020. Licensee will still be required to renew their licenses during the May 1 to June 30, 2020 renewal period.

NEBRASKA

  • License renewal is being deferred. Expiration dates for medical licenses will now appear as 06/30/2021 on License Lookup unless the licensee has renewed. Licenses may continue to defer until the COVID-19 State of Emergency is lifted. Licensees who choose to renew, may do so.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

  • Licensees of any board, council, or commission listed in RSA 310-A: 1-a (includes Medicine) shall be allowed to complete continuing education requirements through remote instruction until 30 days after the end of the current State of Emergency, provided the continuing education courses otherwise satisfy the applicable criteria established in the laws and rules governing the profession.

NEW MEXICO MEDICAL BOARD

NEW MEXICO BOARD OF OSTEOPATHIC MEDICINE

  • MDs: Pursuant to 16.10.4.15 NMAC: A physician unable to fulfill the CME requirements prior to the date of license expiration may apply to the board for an emergency deferral of the requirements by submitting a request in writing no later than July 1 of the renewal year. A designee of the board may grant a deferral of up to 90 days.
  • DOs: Due to the public health emergency declared by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham in Executive Order 2020-004, and to the cancellation of continuing education (CE) opportunities, the Board of Osteopathic Medicine will implement the following procedures through the Regulation and Licensing Department, Boards and Commissions staff: Boards and Commissions staff will process renewals without the proof of continuing CE credit needed for renewal during the pendency of the public health emergency instituted by Executive Order 2020-004. When the public health emergency is lifted, Boards and Commissions staff will send out a notice to licensees stating that the licensee has 6 months, depending upon the Board or Commission, to submit their proof of CE or be subject to discipline by the Board. Executive Order 2020-004 has been extended until April 2, 2021.

NEW YORK

  • The Department will grant an adjustment to all licensees, regardless of registration renewal date, to utilize self-study for any coursework taken during the period from March 1, 2020 – May 1, 2021, provided that it is taken from a Department-approved provider and is in an acceptable subject area for the specific profession. Coursework taken outside that timeframe must meet the continuing education requirements in each individual profession’s laws and regulations.

OHIO - CME

OHIO LICENSE RENEWAL EXTENSION

  • The Ohio Medical Board will suspend enforcement of the continuing education requirements and the renewal of licenses issued by the State Medical Board of Ohio. This includes, but is not limited to, the requirement for Ohio physicians to obtain 50 hours of Category 1 CME at the time of license renewal. The exercise of the enforcement discretion is effective the March 9, 2020 and will apply to renewals due by March 1, 2021.
  • Licenses due to expire during the period of the COVID-19 emergency (March 9, 2020 – April 1, 2021) now have until July 1, 2021 to renew their license.

OREGON

  • Licensees will not be asked to report specialty board recertification or completed CME hours until the end of the next licensure biennium.

TENNESSEE - Renewal Deadline Extension

TENNESSEE – CME Extension>

  • The relevant provisions of Tennessee Code and related rules are hereby suspended to the extent necessary to extend the current expiration dates for health care professionals to renew their license, certificate, or registration set to expire between March 12, 2020, and the date on which this Order terminates for three (3) months, during which time the holder of each license may continue to legally operate or practice their profession. When each license is renewed, its new expiration date shall be twenty-four (24) months after the expiration date it had prior to this Order.
  • The provisions of Tennessee Code Annotated and related rules and policies are hereby suspended to the extent necessary to suspend the requirement that individuals complete or submit proof of completing continuing education requirements or otherwise demonstrate continuing competence as a condition of reinstating a license, certification, or registration. The Commissioner of Health shall reasonably extend the deadline for these requirements as necessary to respond to the effects of COVID-19.

TEXAS

  • To assist license and permit holders affected by and/or assisting wit the response to COVID-9, the Texas Medical Board automatically extended the expiration dates of many of our license types through 08/31/2020. In addition, the Continuing Education requirements related to these few months of extension were waived.

UTAH

  • The requirement to participate in “live” CE hours is suspended for those with license expiration dates between now (June 18, 2020) and the end of the pandemic.

VERMONT

  • Vermont will allow a continuing medical education extension of up to 180 days and provide alternatives to face-to-face CME opportunities impacted by COVID-19. Online courses and training will be allowed. An extension will be granted if you are unable to complete your continuing medical education due to any of the following circumstances: The in-person CME activity was cancelled due to COVID-19; You feel your health may be at risk by attending an in-person CME activity due to the spread of COVID-19; and/or, You feel your health may be at risk by the required travel to attend an in-person CME activity due to the spread of COVID-19
  • The State of Emergency has been extended through March 15, 2021.

VIRGINIA

If the licensee is unable to complete all of the required 60 hours of CME due to the COVID-19 crisis, he/she will indicate this at the time of license renewal. The licensee will then be asked to explain the reasons he/she was unable to complete the 60 hours (i.e. canceled courses). (Per 18VAC85-20-235, G)

WASHINGTON

  • The Continuing Medical Education requirement has been suspended until midnight on April 25, 2020.
  • License renewal requirements have been suspended until midnight on April 25, 2020.

WEST VIRGINIA

  • West Virginia has suspended the requirement that medical licenses are only valid for two years for the duration of the State of Emergency.
  • The state has also suspended the requirement that physicians biennially furnish proof of completion of 32 hours of CME prior to renewal.

WISCONSIN ACT 185 (p. 12)

  • A health care provider credential is not subject to renewal, or any other conditions for renewal including continuing education, and remains valid for the period beginning March 12, 2020 and ending on the 60th day after the end of the period covered by the public health emergency (Executive Order 72).

If you have any questions, please contact Yekaterina Baker, MA, Senior Manager, Educational Verification and Credit Systems, Division of Education, at ybaker@facs.org.