Education has always been an important part of Sheppard Pratt’s mission. Now the organization’s Center for Professional Education has launched as a hub for professional training opportunities, and all of its digital, on-demand trainings and workshops will be offered free of charge to anyone – both inside and outside of the organization.
The offerings include accredited continuing medical education (CME) courses for physicians and continuing education (CE) credits for specialists such as behavioral health nurses, social workers, psychologists, and counselors.
“We’ve made a purposeful commitment to remove barriers to accessing high-caliber, high-fidelity educational tools,” says Todd Peters, MD, the vice president and chief medical officer at Sheppard Pratt. “Most providers will be able to meet their annual continuing education requirements just by tuning in to our free events.”
Sharing Knowledge with a Global Community
Learning, charity, and community are among Sheppard Pratt’s 12 guiding principles, and those principles are represented in the vision of the Center for Professional Education, adds Elizabeth Ryznar, MD, MSC, director of medical education at Sheppard Pratt.
“Our mission is to improve the care of people with mental and behavioral health conditions, but we can’t meet the need by treating everyone within our own system,” Ryznar says. “We want to be able to share what we're learning and what we're doing with professionals in other parts of the country and the world.”
Sheppard Pratt has long welcomed outside clinicians to attend a weekly grand rounds lecture series, as well as hosting in-person workshops and trainings. “We had been wanting to create a hybrid footprint to reach a wider audience,” Peters says. “When COVID-19 hit, we pivoted quickly to move our trainings and resources to a virtual format.”
After decades of offering workshops, lectures, and grand rounds, the platform now known as the Center for Professional Education came into force in 2020 to organize and expand on Sheppard Pratt’s virtual offerings. Those digital resources—and their audience— have grown quickly. Within the center’s first two years, more than 4,600 providers accessed the available resources, from 48 states, 6 U.S. territories, and 19 countries.
A Boom in Understanding of the Brain
The virtual platform provides new opportunities for providers wanting to learn, as well as those who want to educate. “As a thought leader in the behavioral and mental health space, we’re able to engage prominent leaders in psychiatry and behavioral health to come and share their expertise, including leadership from the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the National Institute of Mental Health,” says Peters.
While continuing education credits are important at license renewal time, the Center for Professional Education is designed to go beyond the basics to help providers stay on top of the fast-evolving field of psychiatry. “In psychiatry and behavioral health, we’re having a boom in understanding of how the brain works, and a lot of novel treatments are coming into the space through interventional psychiatry,” Peters says.
Sheppard Pratt’s workshops, lectures, and trainings cover a broad range of topic areas related to mental and behavioral health, including:
- Evidence-based diagnostic and treatment guidelines
- Basic science research
- Translational research
- Innovations in prevention
- Systems-based change
- Policy and public health topics
“We want to be advocates for a comprehensive approach to mental health, and a source of ongoing education and inspiration for clinicians,” Ryznar says. “Our goal is to be a hub and part of a larger forum for improving mental health and mental healthcare.”
Vice President and Chief Medical OfficerSpecialties:Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT), LGBTQ+ Mental Health Issues, Medical Informatics, Pediatric Mood Disorders, Pediatric Anxiety Disorders
Offerings include accredited continuing medical education (CME) courses for physicians and continuing education (CE) credits for specialists such as behavioral health nurses, social workers, psychologists, and counselors.