Continuing Education

UNC Health Science at MAHEC's Department of Continuing Professional Development conducts regional, statewide, and national programs designed to meet the education and training needs of health and human service professionals in allied health, dental health, medicine, mental health, nursing and pharmacotherapy. Collaboration and the diversity of the healthcare workforce are emphasized in providing programs and services.

Program Distinctions and Certifications

Simulation Center:  The Simulation Center offers three types of simulated “experiential learning” via task trainers, virtual reality task trainers and high-fidelity manikins. Simulation-based education provides a controlled or simulated environment that imitates real-life patient care settings in “live” instead of classroom didactic setting. Simulation training also offers unique and powerful learning opportunities in key competencies, including communication, teamwork, emergent conditions, and tasks that require well-practiced manual skills such as diagnostics and surgical procedures. Medical simulation has important lessons and applications for all involved in the risk-laden environment of health care. It provides the ideal environment for teaching health care teams how to care for patients. Through simulation, learners can practice and master skills without putting patients at risk. By being allowed to make mistakes, learners can see the effects of those errors without harming patients. 

Allied Health: In NC, allied healthcare professionals make up over 35% of the healthcare workforce and include all healthcare professionals who work in collaboration with physicians, nurses and dentists. Because of the increased number of people moving to North Carolina and the aging population in North Carolina, demand for allied health professionals is predicted to grow. MAHEC is an approved provider and/or can offer discipline-specific credit for athletic trainers, diagnostic medical sonographers, dieticians, medical coders/health information technicians, laboratory scientists/technologists massage therapists, occupational therapists/assistants, physical therapists/assistants, radiologic technologists, respiratory care practitioners and speech-language pathologists.

Dental Education: MAHEC provides basic/ required educational opportunities such as BLS, Dental OSHA, Intraoral Radiography (IOR), Dental Medical Emergencies (the 6 hour course fulfills the NC requirement for Limited Supervision Dental Hygienists) and advanced/specific courses on requested "hot" topics in dentistry.

       The North Carolina Health Education Centers (NC AHEC) are an ADA CERP Recognized Provider. NC AHEC’s term of recognition is May 1, 2018 through June 30, 2022. ADA CERP is a service of the American Dental Association to assist dental professionals in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry. Concerns or complaints about a CE provider may be directed to the provider or to the Commission for Continuing Education Provider Recognition at

Diversity: MAHEC provides ongoing multicultural education and diversity programming designed for healthcare professionals and community stakeholders that address workforce diversity and culturally appropriate care. Most sessions are provided in a ninety minute lunch-n-learn format, at no cost between 11:30am – 1:30pm. Participants are free to bring their lunch to these sessions.

Medical Education: MAHEC is an accredited sponsor of Continuing Medical Education (CME) for physicians in the Western North Carolina region and the surrounding areas. MAHEC is accredited by the North Carolina Medical Society to sponsor continuing medical education for physicians. Through judicious use of resources, we strive to provide as broad a range of medical specialty credits as possible including AMA/PRA credit and AAFP (American Academy of Family Physicians) credit to the physician constituency reflective of the distribution of medical specialties within the 16-county MAHEC region.

Mental Health: MAHEC offers continuing education geared for behavioral health professionals at all levels. MAHEC is recognized by the North Carolina Psychology Board as an approved Provider of Category A Continuing Education for North Carolina Licensed Psychologists. MAHEC is a provider approved by the NAADAC Approved Education Provider Program - provider #165445.

MAHEC has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5514. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. MAHEC is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. 

Nursing Education: MAHEC is approved as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the North Carolina Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.  We provide CNE activities for nurses in WNC to maintain clinical competence. Cutting-edge programming about disease states, “best practices”, and evidence-based care is offered along with certification review/preparation courses to enhance professional practice. The RN Refresher Program provides a pathway for RNs who have been out of nursing practice five or more years to return to the nursing workforce. 

Pharmacotherapy Education: The demand for trained pharmacy professionals has increased in past years due to the rapid growth of the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, especially for the growing elderly population. The number of pharmacists in healthcare services is also growing, as pharmacists become more actively involved in drug therapy decision-making for patients of all ages. Through its collaboration with the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, MAHEC offers ACPE credit for pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. Traditional continuing education programs are targeted for both retail and hospital pharmacy professionals and are also offered remotely, via live Web Streaming, to home computers and mobile devices. Continuing education programs are offered periodically, with two-hour weeknight programs, and all day Sunday programming.