CEU expiration date question

by Meriwhen Meriwhen, ASN, BSN, MSN, RN (Guide) Guide Expert Nurse Student

Specializes in Psych ICU, addictions.

I tried searching the site but didn't find my answer, so the answer either doesn't exist in a thread or I haven't searched correctly...could go either way, really :)

I see that CEUs have an expiration date. For example, I just completed this one:

Title: Alcoholism and Depression

CEUs: 2.3

Published Date: October 2012

Expiration: 12/31/2014

Now, what exactly does that expiration date mean? Does it mean that course won't be offered after that date, or that I can't use those CEU hours for any purpose after that date? Or does it have an entirely different meaning?


KelRN215, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pedi. Has 15 years experience. 1 Article; 7,349 Posts

I think it means the course won't be available after that date. I notice it a lot on medscape. I think as long as you complete it before it expires, you're good.

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 42 years experience. 4 Articles; 20,908 Posts

right....you have to take the course by that time but the CEU's earned count towards licensing


nurseprnRN, BSN, RN

2 Articles; 5,114 Posts

I have certifications that won't accept CEs more than X years old (usually 5, but some are less). The CEUs don't expire themselves-- they aren't loaves of bread or quarts of milk-- but the recerts declare they have a "use by" date. :)

Meriwhen, ASN, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in Psych ICU, addictions. 4 Articles; 7,907 Posts

Good to know. Between the BON, maintaining one certification and obtaining another, I have to accrue A LOT of CEUs every year. I was worried that if they expired, I couldn't use them anymore.




Specializes in retired LTC. 7,735 Posts

It would make sense that a provider would have an expiration date on a program. The material covered needs to be up-to-date and reflect current standards, so outdated information has little benefit in an industry that changes as quickly as healthcare.

Kind of like why they reissue new classroom textbooks every couple years or so. (They say that's the REAL reason, not just to cost more money!!!)


classicdame, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Hospital Education Coordinator. 2 Articles; 7,255 Posts

First, there is no CEU. Units used to refer to 10 contact hours as one unit. Now we just refer to the contact hours, so the term is CNE. Two years is the limit for materials because, for it to be Continuing Education, the nurse needs up to date material. Some materials are enduring, such as CD's and DVD's. They still will indicate an expiration date so you do n ot pick up an old DVD assuming the information within is current. Most agencies awarding the contact hours require the expiration date. You want the requirements to be somewhat restrictive so you will have confidence in the provider that you are getting what you need. Happy Learning!