What is Nursing Certification?
Certification, as defined by the American Board of Nursing Specialties (ABNS), is the formal recognition of the specialized knowledge, skills, and experience demonstrated by the achievement of standards identified by a nursing specialty to promote optimal health outcomes.
The Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification defines certification as:
The formal recognition of the specialized knowledge, skills, and experience demonstrated by the achievement of standards identified by a nursing specialty to promote optimal health outcomes. After meeting defined eligibility criteria, a certification candidate achieves a nationally recognized credential through successful completion of a rigorous examination.
The American Nurses Credentialing Center describes certification this way:
Board certification is an important way to distinguish that a nurse has a met a level of distinction and knowledge indicating professional nursing practice. Board certification also gives the public some assurance that the individual must engage in lifelong learning to maintain and renew their certification, and in the case of advanced practice nurses their authorization/licensure to practice. The public recognizes the significance of this achievement and it provides some assurance that the individual who is caring for them has acquired a predetermined level of knowledge in the specialty area of practice.
5 Reasons Why You Should Think About Getting Certified
- The process of getting certified can make you a better nurse. Preparing for the certification test broadens your specialty knowledge so you can more confidently and effectively address the needs of your patients.
- Being certified brings professional recognition. Displaying credentials shows that you have the knowledge to provide high quality patient care.
- Being certified brings a sense of satisfaction. Statistics show that satisfied nurses are much more likely to stay in their jobs—and much less likely to be searching for a new position.
- Getting certified may bring financial rewards—increased income, an annual bonus, or an advanced rating on a nursing clinical ladder. Plus, some healthcare employers might pay all or part of the certification test fee.
- Public awareness of nursing certifications has grown over the last decade. Today, Americans may be even more aware of nursing certifications than they are of physician or teacher certifications. In 1999, the American Nurses Association found that just one in three persons knew about nursing specialty certifications. By 2002, a survey by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses discovered that 8 in10 people were aware that nurses could be certified in specialty areas.
- Certification benefits healthcare organizations. Those that hire and retain high percentages of certified nurses can use this information to improve their credibility in the competitive healthcare market or when seeking Magnet® status or endorsement by The Joint Commission or Association of Community Cancer Centers.
Certifications Offered by ANCC
|AGACNP-BC||Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner||ANCC|
|AGCNS-BC||Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist||ANCC|
|AGPCNP-BC||Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner||ANCC|
|FNP-BC||Family Nurse Practitioner||ANCC|
|NEA-BC||Nurse Executive, Advanced||ANCC|
|NHDP-BC||National Healthcare Disaster Certification||ANCC|
|PMHNP-BC||Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (across the life span)||ANCC|
|RN-BC||Ambulatory Care Nursing||ANCC|
|RN-BC||Nursing Case Management||ANCC|
|RN-BC||Nursing Professional Development||ANCC|
|RN-BC||Pain Management Nursing||ANCC|
|RN-BC||Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing||ANCC|
Subscribe to Our Newsletter
Be the first to know! Sign up for our weekly newsletters and get hot-off-the-press career development advice, tips, products, and services direct to you from ANA.