NSPM FAQs

  • Q What is nonsurgical pain management (NSPM)?

    The administration of neural or neuraxial blockade, physiological, pharmacological, and psychological techniques and modalities for the management of acute and chronic pain outside the obstetrical and operating room areas. (This may include the assessment, planning, implementation, and evaluation of multimodal approaches in providing patient care.)
  • Q What are the eligibility criteria for the NSPM credential?

    The eligibility criteria for the NSPM credential include:

    • Current NBCRNA Full Recertification or CPC Compliance
    • Current nurse anesthesia clinical practice 
    • Documentation of current RN and, if applicable, APRN licensure
    • Documentation of two years of nurse anesthesia clinical experience 
    • Completion of education activity that demonstrates acquired knowledge in each of the following areas within the immediate prior four years from the date of application: physiology and pathophysiology of pain; imaging safety; assessment/diagnosis/integration/referral; pharmacological treatment; interventional pain strategies; and, professional aspects.
    • Submission of a practice portfolio 
    • Successful completion of an assessed NSPM cadaver or assessed simulation course
    • Successful completion of the NSPM subspecialty certification examination
  • Q When are applications for the NSPM credential available and what are the scheduled exam dates?

    The NSPM certification examination is offered twice a year. Application windows and test dates are listed on the NSPM home page.
  • Q How much does the NSPM subspecialty credential cost?

    Current NSPM examination fees are listed on the Fee Schedule page located on the About Us page of the NBCRNA website. 
  • Q What will the NSPM examination cover?

    The NSPM subspecialty examination will assess competence in three anatomical approaches (i.e., midline, lateral, peripheral), four anatomical regions (i.e., cervical, thoracic, lumbar, and sacral), and the NSPM certification examination content outline.
  • Q How long is the NSPM certification examination?

    The NSPM certification examination consists of 150 scored multiple choice questions and two-to-three clinical scenario items. The total time allowed for the examination is four hours or 240 minutes. The NSPM certification examination is not computer adaptive. Clinical scenario items (CSIs) are an item type where the examinee is presented with a base clinical patient scenario and multiple possible actions to manage the patient. Through the course of the examinee’s selections, additional information regarding the patient is provided. These CSIs add value to the examination experience by replicating interactions between a patient and a nurse anesthetist.
  • Q When does the NSPM certification need to be renewed?

    An NSPM-C nurse anesthetist is required to apply for NSPM continued subspecialty certification within the required time frame after initial NSPM subspecialty certification.  
    NSPM recertification is valid for four years and NSPM recertification renewal is in alignment with the nurse anesthetist’s individual CPC Program cycle. 

    If initial NSPM certification was obtained prior to the start of the CPC Program on 8/1/2016, the initial NSPM certification will expire at the completion of the nurse anesthetist’s first four-year CPC Program cycle (i.e., 2020 or 2021). 

    If initial NSPM certification is obtained after the start of the CPC Program on 8/1/2016, the initial NSPM certification will expire at the completion of the nurse anesthetist’s current four-year CPC Program cycle. 
  • Q How often may I take the NSPM examination?

    NSPM candidates may take the NSPM up to two times within a calendar year. An application fee will be required each time a candidate applies for the NSPM examination.
     
  • Q What is the criteria for continued NSPM subspecialty certification?

    The criteria for continued NSPM subspecialty certification includes:

    • Hold current NBCRNA Full Recertification or CPC Compliance as a nurse anesthetist
    • Hold current NBCRNA NSPM-C credential
    • Hold current, unrestricted RN and, if applicable APRN licensure
    • Attest to continued practice in the NSPM subspecialty
    • Have completed one NSPM core module prior to expiration of four-year CPC Program cycle
    • Successful completion of the NSPM subspecialty certification examination every eight years
     
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NSPM FAQs
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