By the Division of Professional Licensure

3.01: Scope and Purpose

The purpose of 235 CMR 3.00 is to assure high standards in the practice of opticianry by requiring licensed dispensing opticians to participate in on-going continuing education activities designed to increase their competence and enhance the knowledge obtained during prior education and training.

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3.02: Definitions

As used in 235 CMR 3.00, the following definitions shall apply:

Board - means the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Dispensing Opticians.

Contact Hour - means a unit of not less than 50 consecutive minutes of actual instruction time in an approved continuing education course, program, or other continuing education activity.

Continuing Education Activities means any course, program, seminar or workshop which provides information or knowledge which contributes directly to the professional competence of dispensing opticians and which meets the requirements of 235 CMR 3.04.

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3.03: Continuing Education Requirement

  1. Beginning June 1, 2006, every licensed dispensing optician shall complete a minimum of twelve (12) contact hours of continuing education activities prior to the end of each licensure period in courses or programs approved by the Board pursuant to 235 CMR 3.05 as a condition for renewal of his or her license.
  2. Of the twelve (12) contact hours of continuing education activities required for license renewal pursuant to 235 CMR 3.03(1), six contact hours shall be in continuing education activities concerning dispensing of eyeglasses or spectacle lenses, and six contact hours shall be in continuing education activities concerning dispensing of contact lenses. Of the six contact hours devoted to continuing education activities concerning dispensing of eyeglasses or spectacle lenses, one contact hour may be in continuing education activities concerning state and federal laws and regulations which govern the practice of opticianry. Of the six contact hours concerning dispensing of contact lenses, one contact hour may be devoted to cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training.
  3. Continuing education activities may be completed through the home use of audio or video cassettes, or through computer-based "on-line" courses or programs, but credit for such contact hours may be obtained only if the licensee demonstrates satisfactory comprehension or understanding of the content of that course or program to the provider or sponsor of that course or program.

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3.04: Verification of Continuing Education Activities

  1. Each licensed dispensing optician, as part of his or her application for renewal of his or her license, shall attest under the pains and penalties of perjury that he or she has completed the number of continuing education hours required by 235 CMR 3.03. Such attestation shall be made on a form prescribed and provided by the Board.

  2. Each licensed dispensing optician shall maintain a record of all continuing education courses or programs he or she has completed for a period of not less than two consecutive licensure periods, inclusive of the licensure period during which the course or program was completed.

  3. Upon written request by the Board, a licensed dispensing optician shall furnish to the Board such information as the Board may reasonably require about any or all continuing education activities completed by that licensee. A licensed dispensing optician who is requested to submit such verification of his or her continuing education activities shall submit written verification of all of the following:

    1. The name of the school, institution, organization or other sponsor conducting the continuing education activity in question; and

    2. The location at which the continuing education activity in question was completed;

    3. The title of the continuing education activity in question; and

    4. The date on which the continuing education activity in question was completed;

    5. The number of contact hours of continuing education credit being claimed for the continuing education activity in question; and

    6. Satisfactory proof that the continuing education activity was approved for continuing education credit by the Board or a recognized entity approved by the Board.

  4. Failure or refusal to provide proof of completion of the number of contact hours of continuing education required by 235 CMR 3.03, within 30 days after receipt of a request for the same from the Board shall constitute grounds for disciplinary action by the Board.

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3.05: Approval of Continuing Education Activities

A licensed dispensing optician may receive credit towards the continuing education requirements of 235 CMR 3.03 only for:

  1. A continuing education activity which has been approved for continuing education credit by the Board; or

  2. A continuing education activity which has been approved for continuing education credit by the American Board of Opticianry (ABO); or

  3. A continuing education activity which has been approved for continuing education credit by the National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE); or

  4. A course provided or sponsored by an educational program in opticianry which has been accredited by the Commission on Opticianry Accreditation (COA).

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REGULATORY AUTHORITY
235 CMR 3.00: M.G.L. c. 112, § 73F.