NBCRNA Announces Removal of Pass/Fail Requirement for the CPC Assessment

February 14, 2019

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CPC Assessment Options Added: Home or Testing Center

February 15, 2019

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CPCA Change FAQs

  • Q What prompted the NBCRNA board to drop the pass/fail assessment?

    The CPC Program was designed to both support lifelong learning and evolve as new information, data and technologies become available. As part of our continual search, scan and review of new evidence, the NBCRNA launched an extensive Beta Research Study on the CPC Assessment (CPCA) involving the participation of more than 1,500 CRNAs, as well as a national benchmarking study. After careful consideration of the results and data from those studies, and recommendation from the NBCRNA’s Evaluation and Research Advisory Committee (ERAC), the NBCRNA Board of Directors made the decision to remove the pass/fail assessment component of the CPC Program at their January 2019 meeting. The CPC Assessment will still be required every eight years, but will remain a performance standard assessment only—no pass/fail.
  • Q When are the upcoming CPC Assessments? When will I need to take it?

    The CPC Assessment is taken during the second 4-year cycle (excluding the final six months). For a majority of CRNAs, that means the CPCA will be taken between 2020-2024 if you recertified or initially certified in 2016, and between 2021-2025 if you recertified or initially certified in 2017. It is up to you if you want to take the CPCA earlier or later in your second 4-year cycle. (NOTE: It is not a pass/fail assessment and there is no loss of certification regardless of performance on it.)

    Timing example: CRNAs who recertified or initially certified in 2016 will take the CPCA by 2024, but could opt to take it as early as 2020—during that second 4-year cycle. With the removal of the pass/fail assessment component, the next CPCA after that will be taken during the final four years (2028-2032) of the next 8-year CPC period and will remain a performance standard assessment—no longer pass/fail. So again, for the example of CRNAs who recertified or initially certified in 2016 and took their first CPCA by 2024, they will take the subsequent CPCA by 2032.

    Get your personalized CPC timeline using the CPC Calculator.

  • Q What if I don’t meet the standard on one of the four core domains on the assessment?

    If you do not meet the performance standard on the CPC Assessment, you will need to complete additional continuing education in the area(s) where the established standard was not met. The choice of additional continuing education will be completely up to you, but the specifics to guide those selections are currently being finalized and will be released soon.
  • Q Do I need to do anything if I take the assessment and meet the performance standard?

    If you meet the determined performance standard on the CPC Assessment (CPCA), you don’t need to do anything in addition to the current CPC requirements (which are 60 Class A, 40 Class B—note that

    extra Class A over the required 60 count towards the 40 Class B requirement, and 4 Core Modules). You will not need to take another assessment for up to eight more years. Get your personalized CPC timeline using the CPC Calculator.

  • Q Where will I take the CPC Assessment?

    For the CPCA starting in 2020, the NBCRNA Board of Directors moved to offer CRNAs the choice of taking the CPCA either from the comfort of their own home or place of their choosing, or at a testing center. This provides the flexibility to select the setting that works best for you to minimize travel time and time away from practice, while reducing related costs.
  • Q Why is the CPC Assessment closed book?

    The NBCRNA gave careful thought in making this evidence-based decision. The CPC Assessment Beta Research Study included participation by 1,500 CRNAs and looked at their performance on the CPC Assessment covering the four core domains of nurse anesthesia in six testing conditions, including remote vs. in-person proctoring, and with and without resources. Data from the study showed there was no significant difference in the rate in which study participants met the identified performance standard, whether or not they had access to resources. Those who had resources, rather, spent more time taking the assessment. Therefore, the study results indicated that a closed-book condition took test-takers less time to complete with no significant difference in the rate of meeting the passing standard across all conditions—even those with access to resources. Administering the CPCA in this way will result in a time and cost savings to you.
Learn more about the CPC Assessment Research Study.