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Julia Johnson

23 March 2023

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CRNFA Accreditation Status

CRNFA Accreditation Status

Since 1992 the Certified Registered Nurse First Assistant (CRNFA) certification has been the premier credential for nurses in the expanded role of RNFA and remains so to this day. CRNFA was originally developed by the Competency and Credentialing Institute (CCI) and was accredited as an exam-based credential. Maintaining accreditation for an exam-based credential requires statistical analysis of exam results based on a certain volume of exams. In recent years, the accreditation status and the future of CRNFA was in jeopardy due to low testing volume.

In 2019 CCI sold the credential to NASC, an organization that is committed to providing the resources to maintain CRNFA as an active credential. The NASC Board of Directors made the decision to transition the credential to a portfolio-based assessment in response to sustained low testing volume for CRNFA. During development of the portfolio, the accredited status of CRNFA expired as it was no longer an exam-based credential.

The Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification (ABSNC) is the only accrediting body specifically dedicated to evaluating nursing certification programs and has an accreditation process for portfolio-based credentials, such as CRNFA. ABSNC-accredited programs are recognized on the ANCC Magnet scorecard. The ABSNC accreditation process requires that the certification program be established and functioning prior to submitting an accreditation application. The NASC portfolio-based certification program has awarded over 200 CRNFA certifications and is now eligible for ABSNC accreditation under the portfolio standards. NASC has begun the process and is actively seeking accreditation with ABSNC.

We will post our progress on our website and in our newsletters. If you have any questions, please feel free to email Julia Johnson at or call 866-681-6272.


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