Plastic Surgical
Nursing Certification
Aesthetic Nurse
Specialist Certification
Education Resources Certification Board Certified Nurses Area

Q: I have returned to school to work on my BSN/MSN. Will courses I take while working on my degree meet the criteria for recertification?
A: All of your courses will meet the criteria Category B: Academic Courses. NOTE: One semester credit equals 15 contact hours; one quarter credit equals 10 contact hours. To receive credit for any courses you take, you must provide an official transcript. These credits, unless specifically related to the core specialty, will not count toward the 30 Category A credit hours.

Q: I attended a plastic surgical program that offered continuing medical education (CME) credit, but not nursing contact hours. Will this be accepted as credit toward recertification?
A: Possibly. If you were officially registered for a program that offered CMEs and not nursing contact hours, and if the program was specific to Plastic Surgery and relevant to your practice, you can submit a letter, accompanied by all supporting documentation, requesting the PSNCB review and accept the CMEs toward recertification. Letters must be submitted prior to submitting your recertification packet. Packets submitted entirely or the majority of CME credits will not be accepted.

Q: I am the second author of a plastic surgical nursing article published in a recognized professional journal. Do I receive partial or full credit for publication?
A: Yes, if listed as an author, you receive full credit. Authorship of an article/chapter that meets the specified criteria equals 5 contact hours.

Q: Do all core specialty contact hours have to be awarded by ISPAN?
A: No. However, the ISPAN is an excellent resource for approved plastic surgical nursing educational program. In addition, ISPAN offers contact hours through continuing education articles for independent study. To use the credits from the ISPAN Convention for your recertification, the dates of the meeting must fall before the date your application is to be submitted; however the Board will review hours that may have been earned within a 30 day window of your recertification.

Other nursing groups also provide quality programs that may be related to your core specialty or fall in the general nursing category. The consumer of continuing education should carefully assess the nature of the source of continuing educational approval for any program. Programs approved for contact hours by an ANCC-COA provider unit such as ISPAN and state nurses’ associations will always be an excellent choice.

Q: I sat for the PSNCB exam on the 15th of the month and attended a continuing education program over the next 3 days. Now that I have passed the exam, will I be able to use the approved contact hours from that program for recertification?
A: Yes. Approved programs attended within 30 days of the date the exam was taken and passed may be submitted. Programs attended prior to that time are not accepted.

Q: Does the exam itself provide continuing education credit?
A: No. The CPSN and the CANS exams do not have continuing education credit.

Q: I submitted my recertification application in April, my certification expires in June. In May I attended an educational program awarding nursing contact hours. Can I use those contact hours for my next recertification cycle in 3 years?
A: No. Contact hours earned during the period of your certification can be used only during the current recertification period.

Q: I have more contact hours of continuing education than the required amount. Should I list and provide evidence of all offerings I attended in case some contact hours are not accepted?
A: Yes. List all the hours you have accumulated particularly related to your core specialty.

Q: What will happen if I am unable to meet the continuing education requirements for recertification?
A: You may certify by retaking the examination or lose your credential.

Q: I maintain both a CANS and CPSN credential, can I use the same continuing education, if applicable, for both certifications?
A: Yes. As long as the continuing education activity meets the criteria for both certifications, it can be submitted as part of both recertification materials. CPSN and CANS recertification packets should always be sent separately with copies of the activity included in both.


Deadline Late Fee Deadline* Examination Date Examination Location
Deadline has
Deadline has
October 1, 2018 Chicago, IL during
ISPAN 2018 – The Meeting

You may submit your application beginning June 1, 2018
Deadline has
Deadline has
October 13, 2018 National Test Sites

You may submit your application beginning June 1, 2018

*Add $25 late fee to application

For question regarding the location and time of the exams, please contact C-NET at 201-217-9083.

Find out more about the CANS and CPSN exam dates.

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The Core Curriculum for Plastic Surgical Nursing, 4th edition, represents the comprehensive documentation of plastic and reconstructive surgical nursing knowledge and skills. This new edition reflects advances in technology and patient management and contains additional chapters presenting material on a wider variety of topics germane to plastic surgery.

The Core Curriculum for Plastic Surgical Nursing, 4th edition, is a resource for every aspect of patient care and the development of educational materials and a guide for self-development. Each chapter includes principles upon which to base an effective plan for patient care.

Certification Education Materials