ARBO Executive Director Lisa Fennell says that the relaxed rules will be in place through May 31, 2020.
“Any organization or CE provider that had planned a live activity and had already submitted courses to COPE is able to present them online in an interactive way,” she says. “Attendees have to be able to interact with the instructor in real time.”
Fennell says that a temporary relaxation helps all involved.
“The companies that had planned CE are going to be out a lot of money, and we want them to do what they had planned to do. This is a way to help them,” she says.
However, moving from in-person to online CE with live interaction may be a challenge for event planners. Pivoting to interactive distance learning requires additional planning and infrastructure.
Related: Dr. Ben Casella weighs in COVID-19
Online optometry community ODwire.org, which held its sixth annual online CE conference CEwire2020 in early February, is conducting its conference again in late April to help ODs meet their CE needs.
CEwire 2020 will be held live on April 25 and April 26, offering 60 COPE-approved CE lecture hours.
“With COVID-19 making travel impossible and forcing many ODs to stay home from work, we want to make it as easy and safe as possible for people to fulfill their mandatory continuing education requirements in these difficult times,” says conference co-organizer Paul Farkas, OD, FAAO.