Skip to main content

Continuing competency specialty assessment

Continuing Competency Initiative – how and why

CONTINUING COMPETENCY INITIATIVE

The orientation  phase of the  Continuing Competency Initiative  (Stage 1) has now been completed.  All those who hold a NCC core certification are beyond the orientation phase which was completed in December of 2013.   An assessment is now needed and an integral part of the maintenance process  for those due in 2014 or any future date.   These changes have been incorporated into the standard maintenance requirements for those holding core (RNC  or NP) certification.   

« Back to continuing competency

For those core certified as a RNC or NP and are due for maintenance in 2014 or later.

What are your maintenance requirements?

  • Your maintenance requirements will be determined by your education plan resulting from your continuing competency assessment.  CE hour requirements can be as low as 10 hours but no higher than 45 hours. 

Continuing competency assessment

  • You should take the continuing competency assessment as early as possible in your certification cycle to insure you have the maximum time to earn CE for maintenance.
  • NO CE that is earned PRIOR to taking the assessment can be used for maintenance. 
  • The assessment reflects content that is tested on the certification exam and is designed to show that you have maintained those same knowledge competencies over time.
  • You will be issued an education plan that will show your knowledge strengths and gaps. 
  • The assessment is required and the education plan is binding for all those due to maintain 2014 or later.   
  • You will need to earn the both the total hours stated in the plan as well as the specific hours in each core competency area (specialty code).  
  • You will earn 5 hours of CE for taking the assessment which can be used for any area in your Stage 2 education plan.  These five hours will appear in your ONLINE MAINTENANCE APPLICATION NOT YOUR ACCOUNT.   No CE certificate will be issued as these hours only apply for NCC maintenance.  Your interactive plan will also reside in your online maintenace application - select the add, track or submit your CE link on the home page.
  • To complete the maintenance process, once you have the required CE, you must file a maintenance application online and pay your maintenance fee. Go to GO TO YOUR APPLICATION under the Maintain Your Certification section of the homepage of the NCC website. You must sign in with your email and password to access.      
  • The assessment will be required to be taken at the start of each  maintenance cycle to obtain the individualized education plan going forward for each new maintenance cycle.

How to Access the Assessment

  • Sign in to the website with your email address and password.
  • Go to the Continuing Competency Specialty Assessment section on the home page and select take assessment.
  • Read the important information about the assessment and the link to the assessment is at the bottom of the page.
  • The education plan will become available to you once you complete the assessment or you can find it in your website account.
  • The assessment is available up to three months prior to the start of your new maintenance cycle if you submitted your current maintenance cycle early and it has been approved. However, all CE must be earned during your current cycle of certification.  For early filers that would be the 1st day of the start of your next maintenance cycle (March 16, June 16, September 16 and December16).  For all others it starts the day after you take  the assessment at the beginning of each new maintenance cycle. 
  • You will have 2 hours and 15 minutes to take the assessment in one sitting.  

NOTE:   The new program only applies to those who hold an active core certification credential. 

  • RNC-OB
  • RNC-MNN
  • RNC-NIC
  • RNC-LRN
  • WHNP-BC
  • NNP-BC

This does NOT apply to those who a certification that is no longer offered by NCC or any certificate of added qualification 

  • Electronic Fetal Monitoring
  • Neonatal Pediatric Transport
  • Obstetrics for the Primary Care Health Care Provider
  • Gynecologic Reproductive Health
  • Breastfeeding
  • Menopause Clinician and/or Educator
  • Ambulatory Women's Health Care Nursing
  • High Risk Obstetric Nursing
  • Reproductive Endocrinology/Infertility Nursing
  • Telephone Nursing Practice
  • ANA-MCH/NCC Joint Certification Process

What if I don't want to take the assessment or didn't take the assessment at the start of the maintenance cycle?

« Back to continuing competency

By not taking the Assessment, you will lose an opportunity to assess your core competency's strengths and address your knowledge gaps, you will not receive the 5 CE contact hours being offered and you will need to maintain using a different set of requirements as follows:

Alternate Maintenance 

For those who do not wish to take the continuing competency assessment, there is an alternate maintenance option available.   No alternate maintenance applications will be accepted any earlier than 6 months prior to the maintenance due date.

The process will entail the following (subject to change)

  • It will be required that you select the alternate maintenance process by  signing a statement of declaration that you have voluntarily opted out of the continuing competency initiative before you enter your online maintenance application.

Requirements

  • 50 hours of CE is required which is assigned to each of the designated competency area for the specific certification specialty. An alternate education plan will be generated and will need to be followed.. 
  • The fee is $175 and no discounts will be afforded for taking any NCC CE modules
  • All CE activities will need to be documented by uploading a copy of each educational activity 's curriculum in PDF format.
  • A copy of each certificate of completion will also have to be provided in PDF format which will show title, date, accreditor and amount of CE 
  • You must list each CE activity including, title accreditor and number of hours awarded must be completed
  • Each activity must match the uploaded documentation otherwise it will not be accepted.
  • Only CE will be accepted for meeting maintenance requirements.
  • Activities such as preceptorship, presentation of educational sessions etc. will not be accepted.
  • All CE must be accredited by agencies recognized by NCC
  • If individuals fail to maintain under this alternate option and qualify for reinstatement, the filing requirements for reinstatement will mimic those of alternate maintenance.
  • It will take four weeks for these applications to be processed.

Please note components of the program are subject to change  

« Back to continuing competency

The charts below show the content that will be covered on the continuing competency assessment and associated keywords which will provide you feedback on the assessment's outcome relative to knowledge gaps. The number of CE hours that would be required is noted if the assessment results in a specialty index less than 7.5.

Assessment content categoriesAssociated keywordsNumber of CE hours required if you do not achieve a specialty index of 7.5

Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner

Normal Physiology and Management Health Promotion
Fertility Control
Gynecology
Obstetrics
Prenatal Care
Postpartum
Primary Care
10 hours
Pathophysiology Gynecology
Obstetrics
Postpartum
Primary Care
20 hours
Physical Assessment & Diagnostic Tools Health History
Physical Examination
Diagnostic Studies and Lab Tests
Primary Care
5 hours
Pharmacology Drug Therapy
Pharmacokinetics
10 hours
Professional Practice Ethical Issues
Legal Issues
Research
Patient Safety
5 hours

Inpatient Obstetric Nursing

Fetal Assessment Antepartum Assessment
Electronic Fetal Monitoring
Non-Electronic Monitoring
Acid Base Balance
10 hours
Labor and Delivery Labor Management
Obstetrical Procedures
Pain Management
Physiology of Labor
15 hours
Obstetric Complications Disease Processes Affecting the Mother/Fetus and Newborn
Labor and Placental Disorders
Multiple Gestation
Pregnancy Risks
Preterm Labor
10 hours
Postpartum Postpartum Physiology
Postpartum Complications
Lactation
Discharge Planning/Home Care
5 hours
Newborn Adaptation to Extrauterine Life
Infant Nutrition
Newborn Complications
Newborn Resuscitation
5 hours
Professional Practice Ethics
Legal Issues
Research
Patient Safety
5 hours

Neonatal Intensive Care Nursing

General Assessment Developmental Care
Fluids & Electrolytes
Gestational Age
Nutrition
Oxygenation & Homeostasis
Resuscitation
Risk Assessment
Thermoregulation
15 hours
Physiology & Pathophysiology Cardiac
Respiratory
Gastrointestinal (GI)
Genitourinary
Hematopoietic
Neurological
Infectious Diseases
Metabolic
Genetics
Head
Eyes, Ears, Nose & Throat (EENT)
Discharge Planning & Follow up
Grieving Process
20 hours
Pharmacology Drug Therapies
Pharm Principles
10 hours
Professional Practice Ethical Issues
Legal Issues
Patient Safety
Research
5 hours

Neonatal Nurse Practitioner

Physical Assessment Maternal Factors Affecting the Newborn
Physical Examination
Diagnostic Procedures
Laboratory Evaluation
Gestational Age Assessment
5 hours
General Management Fluid & Electrolytes
Nutrition
Resuscitation
Thermoregulation
Developmental Care
Family Integration
10 hours
Physiology and Pathophysiology Cardiac
Respiratory
Gastrointestinal (GI)
Renal
Endocrine
Hematopoietic
Neurological
Infectious Diseases
Musculoskeletal
Skin
Genetics
Head. Eyes, Ears, Nose & Throat (HEENT)
Intrauterine Drug Exposure
20 hours
Pharmacology Drug Therapies
Pharm Principles
10 hours
Professional Practice Ethical Issues
Legal Issues
Patient Safety
Research
5 hours

Low Risk Neonatal Nursing

Mother/Fetus Assess Intrauterine Environment
Maternal Complications Affecting the Newborn
5 hours
Physical Assessment, Thermoregulation and Normal Management Gestational Age Assessment
Diagnostic Laboratory Studies
Thermoregulation
Behavioral Assessment
Breastfeeding
Neonatal Nutrition
15 hours
Neonatal Complications Cardiac
Respiratory
Gastrointestinal
Integumentary
Renal
Genitourinary
Endocrine
Hematopoietic
Neurological
Immunology
Metabolic
Musculoskeletal
Genetics
Head. Eyes, Ears, Nose & Throat (HEENT)
Perinatal Substance Abuse
Hyperbilirubinemia
20 hours
Pharmacology Pharmacokinetics
Breastfeeding and Medications
Drug Therapies
5 hours
Professional Practice Ethical Issues
Legal Issues
Patient Safety
Research
5 hours

Maternal Newborn Nursing

Maternal/Neonatal Factors Affecting Outcomes Antenatal Factors
Intrapartal Factors
5 hours
Postpartum Assessment and Management Postpartum Physiology
Postpartum Management and Family Education
Lactation and Newborn Feeding
Postpartum Complications
Family Dynamics
20 hours
Newborn Assessment and Management Transition to Extrauterine Life
Newborn Physiology and Physical
Assessment
Newborn Management and Family Education
Newborn Complications
20 hours
Professional Practice Ethical Issues
Legal Issues
Patient Safety
Research
5 hours