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Home Health/Hospice Certification

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Vol. 5 •Issue 8 • Page 28
Home Health/Hospice Certification

Nursing certification and recertification in home health and hospice care

The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the National Board for Certification of Hospice and Palliative Nurses (NBCHPN) offer certification opportunities for nurses in home health and hospice care.

ANCC

For more complete information or to request an application:

• go to the ANCC Web site at www.nursecredentialing.org;

• call 800-284-2378; or

• e-mail ANCC@ana.org.

Need-to-Know Information

• ANCC offers various levels of certification in home health nursing, including RN, board certified (RN,BC) and advanced practice RN, board certified (APRN,BC).

• Exams cost $180 for members of ANA organizations (including members of ANA constituent member associations, Federal Nurses Association and the former state nurses associations who have been members for 6 months), $250 for members of designated organizations (a list can be found on the Web site) and $320 for non-members.

• The 2003 exam dates are May 17 and Oct. 18. Information on locations is available by contacting ANCC. About 4 weeks after your application is received, you will receive a test content outline and sample test questions. About 2 weeks prior to the test date, you will receive admission tickets, provided you are deemed eligible and have paid in full.

• You will receive your score report 6-8 weeks after the exam.

• Certification is valid for a 5-year period. The requirements for renewal will be sent with your certificate. All certification programs include the options of submitting evidence of continuing education (CE) obtained during this 5-year period or retaking the examination.

Who Can and How to Apply

To obtain RN,BC certification, candidates must:

• hold a currently active RN license in the United States or its territories;

• have practiced the equivalent of 2 years fulltime as an RN in the United States or its territories;

• hold a baccalaureate or higher degree in nursing;

• have a minimum of 2,000 hours of clinical practice within the past 3 years (faculty may use up to 500 hours of faculty teaching or clinical supervision in the specialty area of practice toward the practice requirement, while students may use up to 500 hours of time spent in an academic program of nursing study toward their clinical practice requirement); and

• have had 30 direct patient/client contact hours within the past 3 years.

To obtain APRN,BC certification, candidates must:

• hold a currently active RN license in the United States or its territories;

• hold a master's or higher degree in nursing;

• have been prepared in the area of practice for which they have applied for certification through a master's program or a formal postgraduate master's program in nursing (no postgraduate supervised clinical practice is required for eligibility to sit for any clinical specialist exams; advanced practice registered nurses seeking certification as clinical specialists can apply for initial certification as soon as they graduate, provided they have received 500 hours of supervised clinical practicum within their academic program);

• have graduated from a program offered by an accredited institution granting graduate-level academic credit for all of the course work;

• have graduated from a program that includes both didactic and clinical components; and

• have graduated from a program that includes a minimum of 500 hours of supervised clinical practice in the specialty area and role.

Recertification

• Candidates for recertification must hold a current active RN license in the United States or its territories; have 1,500 hours of nursing practice in area of certification specialty; and fulfill the specified number of CE credits or other acceptable credits, or recertify by retaking and passing the exam.

• ANCC encourages candidates to complete an application when recertifying with CE and practice hours at least 60 days prior to the expiration of certification, and by CE and exam at least 10 weeks prior to the scheduled exam date.

• A majority (51 percent) of contact hours/CE must be related to your specialty. As of Jan. 1, 2003, 50 percent of the CE requirement for recertification must be from either an ANCC provider or a select list of ANCC-approved providers found on ANCC's Web site.

• Candidates electing to recertify by exam must take and pass the written exam. This option must be completed before your current certification expires. Once it expires, you must recertify through continuing education. Exams are given in May and October. For specific dates and deadlines, visit ANCC's Web site.

• Fees vary according to whether you are recertifying by continuing education or exam, what type of exam you're taking and whether you are a member of any ANA-affiliated organization. Visit the Web site for a complete list of fees and discounts.

NBCHPN

For more complete information or to request an application:

• go to the NBCHPN Web site at www.hpna.org;

• call 412-787-9301; or

• e-mail nbchpn@hpna.org

Need-to-Know Information

• NBCHPN originated in 1992 in response to a need for certification in the specialty of hospice nursing care. All RNs who successfully pass the exam for hospice and palliative nurses may distinguish themselves with the use of the registered designation CHPN® (Certified Hospice and Palliative Nurse).

• The exam contains 150 multiple-choice items. The exam fee is $245 for members of HPNA and $345 for nonmembers.

• A list of test centers, dates and times is located in the candidate handbook at http://www.hpna.org/nbchpn/RN_downloads.htm.

• Exam content areas include those defined as important by hospice and palliative nurses to a nurse with 2 years experience in end-of-life care.

• Candidates will be informed in 5-6 weeks whether they passed or failed the exam. No results will be provided to the candidates by phone, fax or e-mail.

• Certification is valid for a 4-year period.

Who Can and How to Apply

To obtain CHPN certification, candidates must:

• hold a currently active RN license in the United States; and

• have at least 2 years of experience in hospice and palliative nursing practice. (NBCHPN recommends that candidates have the 2 years of experience, but will admit any RN who considers himself or herself prepared to take the examination.)

Recertification

• Renewal can be by exam or by Hospice and Palliative Alternative Recertification (HPAR), a process that confers points for CEs and other professional activities. The exam must be taken every other renewal cycle (every 8 years).

• Renewal of certification costs $210 for HPNA members and $310 for non-members. Fees are the same regardless of which renewal method is chosen.

• The certification exam for hospice and palliative nurses is offered at 40 locations every year on the third Saturday of March and the third Saturday of September.

What's New

The ANCC and the NBCHPN have partnered to create an advanced practice palliative care nursing certification. The palliative care catalog is coming soon to the ANCC Web site, but candidates can register in the meantime by downloading the currently available catalog and application forms. An examination content outline is also available on the Web site.

To obtain palliative care APRN certification, candidates must:

• hold a currently active RN license in one of the states or territories of the United States;

• have graduated from a program offered by an accredited institution granting graduate-level academic credit for all of the course work that includes both didactic and clinical components;

• hold a master's or higher degree from an advanced practice, palliative care master's or post-master's certificate program with a minimum of 500 hours of supervised clinical practice in palliative care; hold a master's, post-master's or higher degree in nursing from an ad.vanced practice program, as a clinical nurse specialist or nurse practitioner with 500 hours of post-master's practice in providing palliative care in the year prior to applying to take the examination.




     

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