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Vitamin D, Sunshine, Optimal Health: Putting it all Together with Dr. Robert Heaney
Robert P. Heaney, MD, Creighton University explores why vitamin D is important, how it works, how we get it and how much we need.

Vitamin D, Sunshine, Optimal Health:
Putting it all Together with Dr. Robert Heaney

Activity Description

Vitamin D is an essential component of the mechanisms by which cells control gene transcription in response to a variety of extra-cellular stimuli. Adequate vitamin D enables an optimal response to a broad variety of signals, whereas low vitamin D status impairs this response, and thus impairs its protective mechanism against chronic disease.

In this video, Robert P. Heaney, MD from Creighton University explores why vitamin D is important, how it works, how we get it and how much we need. He covers the key points of vitamin D physiology and the role it plays in the maintenance of health and specifies practitioner guidelines for implementing a plan to help create optimal health with sunshine and vitamin D.

Upon completion of this activity, participants should be able to:

  • Define what is meant by ‘optimal health’ amongst different age groups.
  • Identify components of physiological criteria for the effects of sunshine and vitamin D.
  • Identify the mechanism of action of vitamin D on health. 
  • Define what needs to be measured in order to assess the patient status.
  • Define a physiological range of 25(OH)D levels for health.

Target Audience
This educational program is designed for physicians, scientists/researchers, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, psychologists, and therapists of all specialties.

Method of Participation
The estimated time to complete this activity is 1-hour. To obtain credit, participants should take a brief pre-activity survey, view the activity video, answer the multiple-choice post test questions, and complete the evaluation form online to receive a certificate immediately upon completion.

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas of policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and GrassrootsHealth. The University of California, San Diego School of Medicine is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation

The University of California, San Diego School of Medicine designates this enduring material for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

AAPA: AAPA accepts certificates of participation for educational activities certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ from organizations accredited by ACCME or a recognized state medical society. Physician assistants may receive a maximum of 1.0 hour of Category 1 credit for completing this program.

NURSES: For the purpose of recertification, the American Nurses Credentialing Center accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ issued by organizations accredited by the ACCME. For the purpose of relicensure, the California Board of Registered Nursing accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ (report up to 1.0 hour of credit and list "CME Category 1" as the provider number).

Release Date: March 16, 2015
Expiration Date: March 15, 2018

Course Director

Cedric Garland, DrPH, FACE
Professor of Epidemiology
University of California, San Diego
San Diego, California


Robert P. Heaney, MD
John A. Creighton University Professor
Professor of Medicine
Creighton University
Omaha, Nebraska

Balance and Objectivity of Content
It is the policy of the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine to ensure balance, independence, objectivity and scientific rigor. All persons involved in the selection, development and presentation of content are required to disclose any real or apparent conflicts of interest. All conflicts of interest will be resolved prior to an educational activity being delivered to learners through one of the following mechanisms 1) altering the financial relationship with the commercial interest, 2) altering the individual's control over CME content about the products or services of the commercial interest, and/or 3) validating the activity content through independent peer review. All persons are also required to disclose any discussions of off label/unapproved uses of drugs or devices. Persons who refuse or fail to disclose are disqualified from participating in the CME activity. Participants will be asked to evaluate whether the speaker's outside interests reflect a possible bias in the planning or presentation of the activity. This information is used to plan future activities.

Drs. Garland and Heaney have no disclosures relevant to the topic presented in this activity.
The CME staff, meeting planners, editorial staff, planning committee, peer reviewer and CME committee reviewers do not have any relevant financial relationships to disclose.

Off-label Disclosure: This educational activity may contain discussion of unlabeled and/or investigational uses of agents that are not approved by the FDA. Please consult the prescribing information for each product.

The views and opinions expressed in this activity are those of the faculty and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of California, San Diego and GrassrootsHealth.

Cultural Competency
This activity is in compliance with California Assembly Bill 1195 which requires CME courses with patient care components to include curriculum in the subjects of cultural and linguistic competencies. Cultural competency is defined as a set of integrated attitudes, knowledge, and skills that enables health care professionals or organizations to care effectively for patients from diverse cultures, groups, and communities. Linguistic competency is defined as the ability of a physician or surgeon to provide patients who do not speak English or who have limited ability to speak English, direct communication in the patient's primary language. Cultural and Linguistic Competency was incorporated into the planning of this activity. Additional resources on cultural and linguistic competency and information about AB1195 can be found on the UC San Diego CME website at

9500 Gilman Drive, MC 0947
La Jolla, California 92093-0947
858-534-3940 - 888-229-6263 -

Type:     Internet Activity (Enduring Material)
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