Continuing Education

Fact Sheet: Veterinarian's Provision of Free Spaying and/or Neutering Services for Continuing Education Credit

  • Chapter 398 of the Laws of 2016, effective February 2, 2017, amends Education Law section 6704-a(2) to permit veterinarians to satisfy a portion of their mandatory triennial continuing education requirements (CE) by providing free spay and/or neutering services and other veterinary services, as long as they satisfy other specified requirements. Other veterinary services are follow-up services for any post-operative complications related to any free spaying or neutering surgery that arise within 24 hours of performing any such surgery.

  • Effective February 2, 2017, section 62.8 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education, will be amended to implement Chapter’s 398’s requirements.

  • Although Chapter 398’s amendment to Education Law section 6704-a(2) gives veterinarians the option of satisfying a portion of their CE requirements by providing free spay and/or neutering services and other veterinary services, it does not require veterinarians to provide such services for CE purposes.

  • By law, during each three-year registration period, veterinarians are required to complete at least 45 hours of CE, acceptable to the Department, a maximum of 22 ½ hours of which may be self-instructional coursework.

  • Self-instructional coursework was originally defined as structured study, provided by a Department approved sponsor, that is based on audio, audio-visual, written, on-line, and/or other media, and does not include live instruction, transmitted in person or otherwise, during which the student may communicate and interact with the instructor and other students. However, as of February 2, 2017, the self-instructional coursework definition will include free spaying and neutering and other veterinary services provided by a veterinarian in conjunction with a municipality, duly incorporated not-for-profit society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, duly incorporated humane society, or duly incorporated animal protection association or persons who would otherwise be eligible under section 117-a(3)(a) of the Agriculture and Markets Law, provided that such services be administered at practices, facilities and properties that are appropriately equipped and staffed to provide such services.

  • The amendment to section 62.8 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education, in accordance with Chapter 398’s amendment to section 6704-a of the Education Law, will allow veterinarians to offset up to three hours of the required CE, at a rate of one half-hour of CE for every one hour of free spaying and/or neutering services per registration period.

  • The offset will only count towards the maximum of 22 ½ hours of self-instructional CE per registration period.

  • For CE credit purposes, the free spaying and/or neutering and other veterinary services must be provided in conjunction in with a municipality, duly incorporated not-for-profit society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, duly incorporated humane society, or duly incorporated animal protection association or persons who would otherwise be eligible under section 117-a(3)(a) of the Agriculture and Markets Law.

  • The free spaying and/or neutering and other veterinary services must be provided in facilities and properties that are appropriately equipped and staffed to provide such services.

  • Veterinarians providing free spaying and/or neutering services must provide any required follow-up services for any post-operative complications related to any free spaying or neutering surgery that arise within 24 hours of performing any such surgery. These follow-up services are considered other veterinary services for CE purposes.

  • Veterinarians must be in compliance with all other CE requirements to claim CE credit for providing free spaying and/or neutering services.

  • Veterinarians must document all the services that they seek to use for CE purposes on the Department’s Attestation of Veterinarian’s Provision of Free Spaying and/or Neutering Services for Continuing Education Credit form. This form should not be submitted to the Department. However, the form must retained by the veterinarian for at least six years from the provision of the free spaying and/or neutering services listed on it. This form must also be provided to the Department upon request and is subject to the usual CE audits conducted by the Department.
Last Updated: February 2, 2017