CPNP-PC Exam Replaces Retired PPCNP-BC Exam

CPNP-PC Exam Replaces Retired PPCNP-BC Exam

The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Commission on Certification retired the Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (PPCNP-BC) exam on December 31, 2018 and therefore those seeking certification as a primary care PNP will need to sit for the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB) Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner – Primary Care (CPNP-PC) exam. According to a joint statement by the PNCB and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC): “Due to a continual low volume of test takers and the availability of the PNCB certification, the ANCC Commission on Certification decided to retire the PPCNP-BC certification. Candidates deemed eligible for the ANCC PPCNP-BC will continue to have the opportunity to test until December 31, 2019.”

Current PPCNP-BC Holders

That doesn’t necessarily leave current PPCNP-BC holders out in the rain. According to the statement, “Nurse Practitioners currently holding a PPCNP-BC can continue to use their credentials and maintain the certification by fulfilling the published renewal requirements. Effective January 1, 2019, nurses seeking certification as a primary care PNP will need to apply to the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB) for initial certification as CPNP-PC.”

That’s good news, because according to the PNCB, as of December 31, 2017, 2,965 nurses actively held the PPCNP-BC credential. Another 16,255 held the CPNP-PC certification. Renewal is a detailed process that you can read about on the nursing world website. But to give you a quick review, here are the basic steps to renew your PPCNP-BC credential, as reported by the ANCC:

  1. You must complete a mandatory 75 continuing education hours (CH), plus one or more of the eight ANCC renewal categories which include:
    1. Continuing Education
    2. Academic Courses
    3. Presentations and Lectures
    4. Publication or Research
    5. Preceptorship
    6. Professional service
    7. Practice hours
    8. Assessment
  2. All APRNs—CNS and NP—are also required to complete 25 CH of pharmacotherapeutics as a portion of the mandatory 75 CH in the CNS or NP certification held.
  3. You may submit a renewal application as early as one year prior to your certification expiration date. If your certification is not renewed before the expiration date, you may be ineligible to practice
  4. You can renew online or by mail.
  5. You can enter all of your professional development activities online in your account.
  6. After you submit your renewal, You will receive confirmation of receipt, followed by communication by mail, phone, and/or email if there are any questions about your application or supporting documents. Once approved, you will receive a letter, followed by a new certificate, pin, and certification card in the mail.

Resources for Renewal

To renew your certification appropriately, you will need to review the following ANCC resources:

Handbook of renewal requirements

General Testing and Renewal Handbook

List of certifications

  1. If you have been deemed eligible for the ANCC PPCNP board certification examination and want to test or retest through December 31, 2019, you can read the details here.
  2. If you have questions you can contact [email protected] or 1.800.284.2378.

Those are the details of this most recent exam change. As always, healthcare is a fluid, dynamic environment and it pays to stay updated on the fine details to protect your active certification.