There are many organizations that offer accredited, Free Continuing Education courses through their websites. These are mostly demo or pre-registration versions. Registration in these sites is free. Once the aspirant registers, the website sends the password by email. This password can be used to access all info, such as the list of courses available, cost and number of hours allotted for each course, and FAQs.
For instance, http://www.nursingmatters.com hosts one pre-registration, free course every month. For November it is a 1-hour course on `Pediatric Psychopharmacology’.
The range of programs offered by these sites is astoundingly broad and include topics such as the following: Age-Specific Considerations in Patient Care, An Overview of Alzheimer’s Disease, Breastfeeding: The Basics, ECG Interpretation: Learning the Basics, Ecstasy: Under the Influence, Latex Allergy: More Than Skin Deep, Perspectives on Childhood Poisoning, Performance Improvement: A Change for the Better, and What’s up at the Joint? New Tracer Methodology. While most courses are of 1 or 2 hours’ duration, some may go up to 8 hours or more depending upon the topic concerned.
Many of these courses use multimedia and communicational platforms such as interactivity, voicemail, video conferencing and more. They also incorporate highly interactive seminars and assessment sessions. At the end of any course, the end user can take an assessment test and get his performance evaluated instantly. All these can be done at any time that is convenient to the end user.
Several Continuing Education organizations offer free courses to nurses, particularly in times of human need. One such course is `Hurricane Katrina: Preventing Infectious Diseases’, a 1.5-hour course offered by Wild Iris Medical Education, as advertised in their website http://www.nursingceu.com. Such courses can be a boon to the community.