Perianesthesia nursing is a unique nursing specialty requiring its own professional certification program as a means to protect the public. ABPANC sponsors two certification programs for qualified registered nurses caring for patients who have experienced anesthesia, procedures requiring sedation, and analgesia: the Certified Post Anesthesia Nurse (CPAN®) and the Certified Ambulatory Perianesthesia Nurse (CAPA®) programs.
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Review this section of the ABPANC website to access all of the information you need to know how to apply, prepare for, and take the examination(s). You are strongly encouraged to download and review the Certification Candidate Handbook prior to applying for an examination in order to be fully informed about ABPANC’s policies as well as the procedures to use when applying for and scheduling your examination.
Length of Certification Period
To ensure that certified nurses possess the most up-to-date knowledge and have recent and current experience, the CPAN and CAPA certification credentials are awarded for three (3) years and must be renewed. For complete information about the recertification program, visit the Recertification section of this website.
Exam Administration & Computer-Based Testing
The CPAN and CAPA certification programs are sponsored by ABPANC. To assist with the development and administration of the examinations, ABPANC contracts with Professional Examination Service (ProExam). ABPANC launched computer-based testing (CBT) on April 6, 2009. The CPAN and CAPA examinations are administered on a computer at Prometric test centers throughout the United States. The feedback about computer-based testing from CPAN and CAPA examination candidates has been overwhelmingly positive. Candidates found the Prometric test centers to be easily accessible, staff very helpful and pleasant, the testing room and cubicles quiet and comfortable, the instructions to take the CPAN and/or CAPA examinations easy to understand, and the examinations easy to navigate.
Candidates were also pleased to find out that they could:
- Mark questions to come back to them later
- Easily change answers
- View a list at the end of the examination that showed any questions not answered.