• ALSO® Sponsor Questions

    What is the cost of the ALSO Provider Course and how are we invoiced?

    View specific course fees for the ALSO Provider Course.

    Sponsors grant learners access to their ALSO Online Course by sending out a unique course URL. They are invoiced by the AAFP for the fee for each learner who accesses their online course. In addition, there is a one-time course materials/registration fee per course. Any items ordered on the product order form are invoiced separately. 

    Do we need any products in addition to what is available with online course access?

    No. All required materials, including the entire ALSO provider manual and slide sets, are available with online course access and can be downloaded. However, email also@aafp.org for any additional products needed, outside the course.

    Can the live component of the ALSO Provider Course be taught in one day if it includes one or more optional chapter(s)?

    Optional chapters extend the time needed to teach the ALSO Live Course. Depending on how many optional chapters the course director chooses to include, the live course agenda may need to extend to a second day.

    What stage of maternity care training is the best opportunity to teach the ALSO Provider Course?

    The ALSO Provider Course is an excellent educational tool at any stage of maternity care training. Many hospitals utilize it as a standardized, evidence-based method to orient new staff in addressing obstetrical emergencies. Some residency programs use the ALSO course at the beginning of new residents’ first year to help prepare them to care for their first maternity patients. Other residency programs teach the course after the first year, allowing residents to learn the basics of childbirth before focusing on urgencies and emergencies.

    Will learners be prepared to demonstrate their knowledge of ALSO content if only one lecture is presented at the live course? 

    Yes. Learners who successfully complete the ALSO Online Course will come to the live course prepared, confident, and ready to demonstrate what they’ve learned at the hands-on workstations.

    What can I expect from ALSO staff?

    ALSO staff is available to assist you with course preparation by providing reports of approved instructors and advisory faculty in your state, if needed. In addition, ALSO staff will work with you to resolve unexpected issues with the course and answer any questions you may have. For assistance, email also@aafp.org or call (800) 274-2237, x7506.

    Why do we need to obtain AAFP ID numbers from our course faculty and how do we obtain them?

    Our automated system is dependent on AAFP ID numbers for learners and faculty. Although the ALSO course dashboard auto-populates ID numbers for learners when they access the online course, sponsors need to obtain AAFP ID numbers from faculty members and enter these in the Instructors section of the dashboard prior to submission. Sponsors should work directly with course faculty to obtain their AAFP ID numbers. The course coordinator should keep these ID numbers on file for future courses. If course faculty members cannot provide their ID numbers, they may call the AAFP’s Member Resource Center at (800) 274-2237 for assistance.

    How do I apply to hold an ALSO Provider Course and how long does it take to be approved?

    Visit the AAFP’s Hold an ALSO Provider Course webpage each time you are applying for a course. The page offers a simple, three-step application process, along with other helpful information. After you apply for continuing medical education (CME) credit, you will receive ALSO Provider Course and CME approval via email soon after submission. The approval email will include a unique course URL for your ALSO Online Course that you will share with learners, as well as a link for the course director and coordinator to access your Course Materials webpage.

    Our learners do not need CME. Do we still need to submit an AAFP CME application?

    Yes. An AAFP CME application must be submitted by the sponsor for every ALSO Provider Course, regardless of whether or not your learners need CME. This process generates the unique course URL, course dashboard, and ALSO Provider status for learners. It also ensures CME credit is added to each learner’s and instructor’s AAFP account/transcript.

    How many CME credits should I request on the CME application for the ALSO Provider Course?

    You should estimate and request credits only for the live component of your course. One CME credit equals one hour of learning. Do not include the welcome/overview and breaks/lunch in your time estimate.

    The online component of the ALSO Provider Course has already been approved separately by the AAFP for a set number of CME credits. The approved credit amount will be indicated in your CME approval email and on the letter of participation that will be available to all learners in their AAFP account.

    How does the AAFP handle instructor and advisory faculty candidates?

    A current advisory faculty member must be present at the ALSO Provider Course to observe both instructor candidates and advisory faculty candidates. The observing advisory faculty member must complete the appropriate evaluation form (found on the Course Materials webpage). The course sponsor will keep these evaluations on file for two years; they should not be submitted to the AAFP.

    Based on the evaluation of the candidate, the sponsor will check the box for ‘Recommend Approved Instructor’ or ‘Recommend Advisory Faculty” on the course dashboard before submitting it to the AAFP. For the approval to be processed appropriately, the current status indicated next to the candidate’s name (‘instructor candidate’ for approved instructor and ‘approved instructor’ for advisory faculty) must be correct before the dashboard is submitted. If it is not, please contact ALSO staff at also@aafp.org to resolve the problem before you submit your dashboard.

    Is the letter of participation still required to show proof of completion?

    No. Proof of completion is now indicated when a learner’s course pre-work shows as ‘Completed’ on the course dashboard. It is the sponsor’s responsibility to follow up with registrants up to the day before the live course to make sure they have accessed and completed the online course. Learners whose course pre-work does not show as ‘Completed’ cannot attend the live course. 

    What is the process for getting letters of participation and wallet cards?

    After the sponsor submits the course dashboard to the AAFP, it is marked as complete by ALSO staff within 24 hours. At that point, the learners get an automated email stating that their letter of participation and wallet card are available in their AAFP account. This email includes a link to the AAFP website. If course sponsors need copies of these items, they should ask learners to download their letter and/or wallet card and email them to the sponsor.

    What are the requirements to become a provider, approved instructor, or advisory faculty for ALSO?

    Anyone providing obstetrical care can become a provider, approved instructor, or advisory faculty for ALSO, including residents, physicians, nurses, midwives, nurse practitioners (NPs), paramedics, and physician assistants (PAs). The following are the requirements for each role:

    • Provider status (three-year status): After successful completion of the ALSO Provider Course, learners are considered ALSO Providers with a three-year status. To maintain this status, they must attend another ALSO Provider Course or an ALSO Instructor Course before their three-year expiration date. Please note: Some individuals obtained ALSO Provider status several years ago, earning a five-year status. They will finish out their five-year status. When they renew, they will have the three-year status.
    • Instructor candidate status (one-year status): Learners may choose to attend an ALSO Instructor Course before their ALSO Provider expiration date. Upon completion of the ALSO Instructor Course, the learner is considered an instructor candidate. To become an ALSO Approved Instructor, you must teach in an ALSO or Basic Life Support in Obstetrics (BLSO®) Provider Course within one year of your ALSO Instructor Course date and have a current advisory faculty member observe your teaching skills. The advisory faculty member must complete an evaluation form, which the ALSO course sponsor will keep on file for two years. The sponsor will check the box for ‘Recommend Approved Instructor’ next to the candidate’s name on the course dashboard prior to submitting it to the AAFP. The instructor candidate will then receive an approval email and instructions to access their wallet card in their AAFP account.
    • Approved instructor status (three-year status): In order to maintain their status, ALSO Approved Instructors must teach in two courses every three years and complete the most recent edition of the ALSO Online Instructor Renewal Course. The instructor renewal course involves reviewing all updated content, attesting to reviewing it, and claiming credit upon completion. Please note: Some individuals obtained ALSO Approved Instructor status several years ago, earning a five-year status. They will finish out their five-year status, teaching three times and completing the ALSO Online Instructor Renewal Course. When they renew, they will have the three-year status.
    • Advisory faculty status (same as approved instructor expiration): If a current ALSO Approved Instructor chooses to become advisory faculty, they will complete the first page of the advisory faculty application. The second page must be completed by a current advisory faculty member after observing the candidate directing a course. The candidate will also provide the course sponsor with their CV and a letter of interest for this new status. All documents will be kept on file by the sponsor for two years. Following the course, the sponsor will check the box for ‘Recommend Advisory Faculty’ next to the candidate’s name on the dashboard. The candidate will then receive an approval email and instructions to access their wallet card in their AAFP account.

    What are the minimum requirements to conduct an ALSO Provider Course?

    • One course director (must have ALSO Approved Instructor or ALSO Provider status)
    • One advisory faculty member (only necessary to be on site if instructor or advisory faculty candidates need to be evaluated; otherwise, required to be available by phone/email to consult)
    • One instructor for every five to six learners (at least 50% of faculty must be ALSO Approved Instructors)
    • One manikin for every five to six learners. The ALSO program offers a manikin rental program. You may indicate quantity on the product order form found on your Course Materials webpage.
    • One room to fit six to eight people that is equipped with a table, chairs, audiovisual equipment, and workstation materials
    • Course materials (link to your Course Materials webpage is included in the course approval email)

    Please refer to the ALSO instructor manual for more guidance on course logistics.

    How do I find instructors for our course and how many do we need?

    Determine the number of learners your site can hold. Plan for at least one instructor for every five to six learners. ALSO staff can provide a list of ALSO Approved Instructors in your state, if needed.

    Funding is limited in our program and we may not be able to pay instructors. Are there other arrangements that we can make?

    Payment for instructors is not always required, but it is recommended. The budget and arrangements for an ALSO course are up to the individual course director. If you will be using instructors from outside of your institution, appropriate compensation for time and travel is common. However, compensation can be negotiated on a case-by-case basis. For example, when there are multiple ALSO courses in the same area, some course sponsors have formed a consortium of local ALSO Approved Instructors who donate their time and trade off teaching at one another’s courses. Another option to increase the number of available instructors in your organization is to send individuals to an ALSO Instructor Course. If there is a shortage of instructors in your area, you may also consider holding a local ALSO Instructor Course to increase your pool of ALSO Approved Instructors.

    We have various residencies attending our course. Can they be billed separately?

    The course sponsor is financially responsible for making sure the AAFP invoice is paid within 30 days of the live course. The preferred payment method is for the sponsor to collect fees from all participating organizations and either write one check to the AAFP or pay with a credit card. The invoice number MUST be indicated on all checks or mentioned when paying with credit card.

    If it is against the course sponsor’s policy to handle funds from other organizations, the sponsor should send a copy of the invoice and the course roster (marking the names of each organization’s learners) to each participating organization and ask them to submit payment for their learner(s) directly to the AAFP. 

    How can we ensure learners do their part by completing the online component of the blended learning format?

    As with any other professional online course, the sponsor is responsible for clearly communicating the deadline when all online course pre-work should be completed. If learners do not successfully complete the required online elements prior to the start of the live course, they will not be allowed to attend. On their course dashboard, sponsors can track who has accessed the online course and who has completed it. It is the sponsor’s responsibility to contact learners whose course pre-work shows as ‘Incomplete’ on the dashboard as many times as necessary until all registrants have completed their online course pre-work.

    What if a learner registered for the ALSO Live Course but can’t attend due to an emergency?

    Although learners are expected to attend the ALSO Live Course on the date(s) for which they registered, we realize emergencies happen. However, the ALSO Online Course is an AAFP product that includes the entire ALSO provider manual as a downloadable PDF. Once a learner has accessed the online course, this is considered a purchase and it cannot be “returned.” On their course dashboard, sponsors can track which learners access the online course but don’t complete the course pre-work or don’t show up for the live course. These learners are marked as No-Show on the dashboard before submission and are included on the online access invoice for the course.

    Most sponsors have a cancellation policy. Possible options may include the following:

    • Since the learner will remain on the invoice, you may collect $120 from the learner to pay for the online product that is now accessible through their AAFP account. The learner will be subject to additional fees if they sign up with another sponsor to attend the ALSO Live Course at a later date.
    • If the learner registers for another ALSO Live Course, the AAFP can transfer their purchase to the new course. The learner must register for the course first and then email also@aafp.org with the new course information (sponsor, date, city/state). We will transfer their online progress to the new live course. The learner must attend the new live course before the release of a new ALSO content edition, which happens every three years. This will ensure that the content of the online course the learner completed matches the content of the live course. 

    Are there course evaluations? Do all learners have the same evaluation, regardless of their discipline?

    Yes. The ALSO Online Course has its own evaluation. The ALSO Live Course has one evaluation for all learners; it is available to sponsors on their Course Materials webpage. Completing the evaluations is optional for most learners, but completion is required by the Kansas State Board of Nursing (KSBN) for all registered nurses (RNs), advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), licensed practical nurses (LPNs), and others seeking continuing nursing education (CNE). Evaluations are kept on file by the sponsor for two years. Please do not mail evaluations to the AAFP.

    If we sponsor an ALSO course, do we have to invite the public to participate?

    No. Course sponsors are not required to advertise their ALSO courses to the public. However, we do encourage all efforts to offer multidisciplinary, team-based learning. Inviting learners from a variety of disciplines and professions (e.g., family physicians, OB-GYNs, midwives, maternity care nurses) to your course is an excellent way to build relationships and incorporate ALSO into your culture. Additionally, practicing physicians, midwives, and nurses often bring their own rich history and experiences to the course, making the learning environment more robust and creating a more realistic team experience. Many course directors have reported that by opening course registration to the public, they have supplemented their educational budgets with the additional income from outside learners.

    How can I keep informed about the latest updates and new information about ALSO courses?

    When we have important updates or release new ALSO content editions, we notify ALSO Approved Instructors and ALSO coordinators in the following ways: 


    ALSO Department (dashboard and status inquiries)
    Email also@aafp.org
    (800) 274-2237, ext. 7506
    (For efficiency, please do not contact individual staff.)

    Member Resource Center (orders, invoice, AAFP ID assistance)
    (800) 274-2237
    Email aafp@aafp.org