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Online EMS CE program enrolls 37K+ students so far

Do you need a recertification? Refresh2021 continues until March 31



By Leila Merrill

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Refresh2021, the online EMS continuing education program hosted by learning management system Prodigy EMS and delivered by an array of nationally-recognized medical directors and EMS educators, has now enrolled 37,642 students.

So far, Refresh2021 has delivered 770,000 individual class hours.

The program offers 30 hours of CAPCE-accredited education that will be accepted by NREMT. Because of the waiver on limits to Distributive Education during the pandemic, the course can be used to satisfy the requirements for national hours for EMT or paramedic recertification.

With an average cost of $215 for the program, Refresh2021 has provided more than $8 million worth of free continuing education.

“This is an incredible number of students and a remarkable amount of free CE delivered,” Prodigy EMS Director James DiClemente said. “We hope to go further as Refresh 2021 continues until March 31, 2022, so there is still time for those who need it to enroll and get their required CE.”

Refresh2021 is the result of an idea by Tom Bouthillet, who previously served as battalion chief of EMS at Hilton Head Island Fire Rescue in South Carolina. A host of household EMS names signed on to provide content, safe in the knowledge that EMS providers would receive free CAPCE credit during a time when they needed it most. Cambridge. Mass.- based Prodigy EMS signed on to provide the platform for Refresh2021 and administer CAPCE credit at no cost.

“The evidence shows that Refresh2021 was the right thing, at the right time, for the right reason. It’s gratifying to know that we’ve been able to help so many people from all over the world. With the recent extension of NREMT’s waiver on the limits for Distributive Education, it’s also the gift that keeps on giving!” said Bouthillet, now Program Implementation Manager for RQI Partners. “It’s been great fun to receive so much positive feedback. I especially appreciate the professional relationships that have been strengthened by this worthwhile endeavor.”

Peter Antevy, M.D., pediatric emergency physician and medical control physician of the Davie Fire Department in Florida also is a fellow architect of Refresh2021.

“The program has gone from strength to strength, and the fact that it will remain open and available for a further three months should offer many more the chance to benefit from this education in what has been a challenging personal and professional time for all,” he said.

To hear the origin story of Refresh2021 and a discussion on the future of EMS education featuring Bouthillet and Antevy, listen to the EMS Educator Podcast.

The 34 presenters include Antevy; Bouthillet; Comilla Sasson, M.D., VP, ECC Science and Innovation with the American Heart Association; and Brandon Drew, emergency medicine specialty leader for the U.S. Navy.

To learn more about Refresh2021 or to register, go to Registration is open until March 31.

Earlier this year, Prodigy EMS and its program faculty and steering committee won the Excellence in Public Information or Education award by the Academy of International Mobile Healthcare Integration for Refresh2021.