The difference between CME and CH
There are two main types of continuing education credits that are awarded by accrediting bodies such as ANCC, AANP, AMA, California Board of Nursing, etc. The first type is Continuing Medical Education, CME. The second is Contact Hours, or CH.
CME credits are awarded to a program after review by an expert panel of physicians and/or PAs who use the MEDICAL model of care to review the program/article/webinar. Medical professionals who receive a certificate that awarded them CME lets them know that they attended a program that used the MEDICAL model as its basis.
CH credits are awarded to a program after review by an expert panel of nurses who use the NURSING model of care to review the program/article/webinar. This model of care is the model DCNPs were trained with, first as RNs and then thru our NP grad school programs. This is the model of care the DNPCB believes we should employ in our practice. We believe that our practice as dermatology NURSE practitioners is unique from our colleagues who were trained under the medical model of care and our patients should benefit from that uniqueness.
Thus, DCNP recertification encourages Certificants to attend as many programs/read as many articles that have been reviewed by an expert nursing panel and awarded Contact Hours as possible. To that extent, the DNPCB allows a maximum of 30 CME toward the 60 continuing education credits to recertify.
We realize that some programs award both CME and CH. That lets you and us know that the program has been reviewed by both medical and nursing experts to be sure that the models of care for both medical and nursing professionals have been addressed.