QPCM - Qualified Professional Case Manager
QPCM is included in the list of national certifications for
ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®


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The Certification for Healthcare Professional transitioning into Case Management, Utilization Review, Discharge Planning and Disease Management


QPCM FAQs


Application and Examination Fee
See 'How it Works' page for more details
  • How much does it cost to take the QPCM certification exam?
    The costs associated with this certification include:
    • Application and Examination fee $350.00 USD

    The $350.00 fee is paid when the applicant has completed entering all required information and submits their application for verification and qualification.

    The verification process includes validation of Nursing license in good standing, verification of job history and confirmation of Certificate program in Case Management or relevant Masters Degree.

    If it is determined that the applicant does not qualify to take the QPCM examination, a $100.00 refund will be applied to the applicant's account.

    The Examination portion of the fee includes:
    • Scheduling of your exam
    • Location for taking the exam
    • Technological requirements for taking the exam
    • Grading and dissemination of the test results (Pass or Fail)
    • Additional provisions for providing a safe and comfortable environment in which to take the exam




Certificate vs Certification

  • What is the difference between a Certificate program and a professional certification?
    A certification assesses competency to perform; a certificate measures a level of knowledge.

    This definition comes from the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (ICE): "Professional or personnel certification is a voluntary process by which individuals' pre-acquired knowledge, skills, or competencies are evaluated against predetermined standards. The focus is on an assessment that is independent of a specific class, course, or other education/training program. Participants who demonstrate that they meet the standards by successfully completing the assessment process are granted the certification."

    The following information and table comes from the Universitey of Michigan's School of Public Health:

    Often the question is asked, "What's the difference between earning a certificate and certification?" To clarify the distinction between certificate and certification a comparison chart has been provided below.


Certificate Certification
Results from an educational process. Results from an assessment process.
For both newcomers and experienced professionals alike. Typically requires some amount of professional experience
Awarded by educational programs or institutions. Awarded by a third party, standard-setting organization.
Indicates completion of a course or series of course with specific focus; is different than a degree granting program. Indicates mastery/competency as measured against a defensible set of standards, usually by application or exam.
Course content set a variety of ways (faculty committee, dean, instructor, occasionally through defensible analysis of topic area). Standards set through a defensible, industry-wide process (job analysis/role delineation that results in an outline of required knowledge and skills).
Usually listed on a resume detailing education; many issue a document to hang on the wall. Typically results in a designation to use after one's name (C.P.H., C.H.E.S.); may result in a document to hang or keep in a wallet.
Is the end result; demonstrates knowledge of course content at the end of a set period in time. Has ongoing requirements in order to maintain; holder must demonstrate he/she continues to meet requirements. C.E.U.'s are continuing education units. For example, RN's and other allied health professionals are required to complete annual C.E.U.'s to keep their licensure.
Provides the basis and gateway for achieving a degree. No relationship with attaining higher education or degree.



QPCM Certification Overview
  • What is QPCM?
    This certification is the first nationally recognized certification for entry-level case managers. It is the only entry-level certification developed for nurses, by nurses, and focused specifically on nursing case management.

    The QPCM is a certification expressly developed to recognize RNs who have met a high standard of educational and work-related eligibility requirements and who have passed a rigorous examination demonstrating a mastery of entry level case management skills.

    Additionally, this certification was developed as a tool to be used by employers and hiring authorities to identify candidates qualified for entry level case management positions.


  • How do I know the QPCM certification is a valid measure of case management competence?
    This examination was developed based on best practices in case management and to produce a valid and reliable assessment instrument.

    The examination content was evaluated and approved by a team of experienced subject matter experts in the field of case management and designed according to the ICE (Institute for Credentialing Excellence) NCCA Accreditation standards (National Commission for Certifying Agencies). The QPCM national certification examination has been developed by the experienced test development experts at QPCM.org.

    The examination development process included:
    • Role delineation analysis/selection and ranking of content domains
    • Test blueprint development
    • Test construction
    • Passing point (cut score) determination

    National certifications for Case Managers, who have several years experience in the profession, already exist; however prior to the QPCM Certification Exam no comparable exam was in place for entry-level candidates. QPCM’s internal subject matter experts drew from existing work in role delineation which provides well defined critical performance- domains of knowledge associated with the field of case management for seasoned practitioners (e.g., www.cmsa.org/portals/0/pdf/memberonly/standardsofpractice.pdf ) The QPCM experts selected 10 domains of Case Management, which were then ranked by an external panel of subject matter experts SMEs (having experience with various hospital and institutional settings, health care models, disease management, rehabilitation, elder care, and workers compensation). The external panel of SMEs ranked the domains independently for their importance with respect to potential employer expectations and needs for entry level professionals desiring to enter the field of case management.

    Based upon the selection and weighting of content domains, a test blueprint and a bank of potential exam items were developed by the QPCM Exam Development Team. Exam items were subject to three successive analysis efforts by an external panel of experts. After each round of analysis, the QPCM Exam Development Team revised the items in the item bank according to the recommendations of the external SMEs.

    The certification examination consists of 79 independent multiple-choice items and 21 scenario-based questions that also are delivered as multiple choice questions. These questions are designed to test both the content knowledge and the critical thinking skills necessary for successful entry-level case managers. Items have been written, revised, recommended for inclusion in the exam by seasoned case managers with knowledge, expertise, and managerial experience in representative areas of case management, and placed in an item bank. All items which appear on the examinations have been reviewed for the following: Content relevance, importance, level of difficulty, cultural bias, psychometric quality, clarity, grammar, and spelling.


  • What is the benefit of being QPCM certified?
    Until the introduction of the QPCM certification in 2014, there was no method for identifying the most qualified and competent candidates for entry level case management positions.

    By meeting the educational eligibility requirements for the QPCM certifications, certificants are more fully prepared for entry into their new career in case management.

    The QPCM certification confirms each certificants' level of knowledge and understanding of the essential components of case management; it prepares the certificant to confidently and competently market her/himself as a qualified and desirable candidate; and most importantly, enables the certificant to stand out from the crowd of other job applicants.


  • With the QPCM certification, what am I qualified to do?
    There are many entry level jobs available for RN Case Managers in the following areas:
    • Disease Management
    • Community Care Management
    • Hospital Discharge Planning
    • Utilization Review
    • Home Care
    • Pre-Authorization
    • Catastrophic Case Management


  • Why is the QPCM certification necessary?
    Employers and hiring authorities may receive hundreds of resumes for each job opening and understandably have limited time to identify the most qualified candidates. Therefore, certifications, like QPCM, are often an effective screening tool for identifying the best candidates to hire.

    In the current competitive work environment, a certification may very well be the only difference between being considered for employment . . . or not.

    "Accreditations and certifications show that you have made continuing professional development a priority and an integral part of maintaining your on-going competence to practice - providing evidence to the public and the profession of the strength of your care management skills." - CMSA.org


  • How does the QPCM certification compare to other case management certifications?
    For those caught in the Catch 22 of needing a job to get experience and needing experience to get a job, QPCM is the only certification dedicated to the population of nursing professionals who have completed pre-approved post-graduate education in case management and wish to transition into a new career.

    The QPCM certification is educationally based as opposed to other certifications that are based on years of case management experience.

    Until RNs can confirm from one to two years of work history as a case manager, they are NOT qualified to sit for most other certification exams (such as CCM, ACM, RN-BC, COHN-S, etc).


  • Is QPCM is included on the list of national certifications for the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program® DDCT™?
    Yes, the QPCM certification is recognized by ANCC on their list of national certifications for the Demographic Data Collection Tool™

  • How will the QPCM certification help me find a job?
    Although there are no guarantees, the QPCM certification will provide a distinct advantage in the hiring process for the following reasons:
    • Certifications are a popular screening tool used by hiring authorities
    • Certifications are a highly valued qualification in the current employment environment
    • QPCM certification provides a competitive edge over other job applicants
    • Certifications help certificants move past the technological "watch dogs"
    • Certificants gain extensive knowledge while preparing for the QPCM exam. This knowledge prepares them to confidently deonstrate their knowledge of case management to hiring authorities.

    The QPCM organization is dedicated to providing each certificant with resources, support, materials and guidance in the following career-related areas:
    • Competency based resumes
    • Competency based interviews
    • Employment networking opportunities
    • Career couching services

    Certifcation holders also gain access to eNewsletters and White papers regarding Career Change Tips and more.




Eligibility Requirements
See 'How it Works' page for more details
  • What are the eligibility requirements for taking the exam?
    Candidates wishing to take the QPCM certification exam are required to meet the following eligibility requirements:
    1. Professional Licensure Requirement: Currently hold an active unrestricted Registered Nurse license in good standing in the United States or its territories.
    2. Employment Requirement: have practiced the equivalent of at least three years full time as a registered nurse during the last 5 years.
    3. Certificate of Achievement: Each applicant must have completed one of the pre-approved Case Management Certificate programs programs (or QPCM verified equivalent) which addresses the core competencies of RN Case Management or hold a relevant Masters Degree. See list of pre-approved programs below.
    4. Moral Character: "Moral Character" is judged by completion of a questionnaire that includes topics related to moral qualities, ethics issues, and criminal background.


  • What Case Management certificate programs or Masters programs meet the eligibility requirements for QPCM?

    Pre-Approved Certificate Programs:

    CLICK HERE for detailed info on approved programs.

    1. AAACEUS.com
      Certificate of Achievement in Case Management Essentials ( hours)
      Link to School


    2. American Sentinel
      RN to MS in Case Management ( hours)
      Link to School


    3. Prime Education Inc
      The Essentials of Case Management ( hours)
      Link to School


    4. University of California - Riverside
      Professional Certificate in Medical Case Management ( hours)
      Link to School


    5. University of California - San Diego
      Case Management Intensive ( hours)
      Link to School


    6. University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center College of Nursing
      Professional Case Management for Nurses and Social Workers ( hours)
      Link to School


    7. University of Southern Indiana
      Case Management Continuing Education Certificate ( hours)
      Link to School


    8. University of Southern Maine
      Certificate Program in Case Management ( hours)
      Link to School




  • Are Social Workers, LPNs or any other healthcare professionals qualified to take this examination?
    Currently only Registered Nurses are eligible to take the QPCM certification exam. At some time in the future, a similar examination will be available to associated healthcare professionals.



Application Process
See 'How it Works' page for more details
  • How do I apply?
    Click on the 'Apply Now' button on the QPCM home page.

  • What information is required as part of the application process?
    The application is divided into the following sections:
    1. Applicant's Contact Information
    2. Nursing License Information - RN license number and state
    3. Job History for last three - five years
    4. Post-grad coursework: Certificate of Achievement in Case Management
    5. Moral Character -- confirmation of stable moral qualities.

    Each of these sections can be completed separately or all at the same time.


  • How long does it take for my application to be processed?
    After submitting your application, allow 3 - 4 weeks for a decision on eligibility, depending on the complexity of the contents of your application and supporting documents.

    If found eligible you will be given an authorization-to-test number and a 6 month window in which to schedule and take your exam.


  • How long does it take to process my application?
    After submitting your application, allow 3 - 4 weeks for a decision on eligibility, depending on the complexity of the contents of your application and supporting documents.

  • How am I notified of the status of my application?
    The process of verification is displayed on your QPCM.org Account page. As long as your application is being processed, your Status will show: Pending

  • If I am approved to sit for the exam, what is the next step?
    If found eligible and your application is approved, you will receive an email notification. You will be given an authorization-to-test number, instructions for establishing an account on the SMT website and a 6 month window in which to schedule and take your exam.

  • If my application is denied, can I re-apply?
    If found not eligible, for any reason, you can re-apply again after 6 months.

  • If my application is denied, will I receive an explanation?
    Yes, you will receive an email explaining the problems with your application.



Examination Process
See 'How it Works' page for more details
  • Where and when is the exam given?
    The QPCM exam is a computer-based exam and is offered throughout the year at test centers across the US. Exam locations can be found here.

    The QPCM exam is administered by Iso-Quality Testing, Inc. (IQT). IQT is a test administration company specializing in the delivery of CBT exams that are secure, high quality, user-friendly, and reasonably priced. IQT successfully delivers thousands of exams annually at over 300 sites throughout North America and around the world.
    • Candidates will be able to test anywhere in the U.S.
    • Candidates will test in open windows, meaning they can test at any time once they are approved to sit for the exam
    • Candidates will have three hours to sit for the exam
    • Candidates will receive a Pass or Fail letter once they have completed the exam


  • What domains are covered in the QPCM certification exam?
    There are nine domains covered by the QPCM examination. These domains (listed below) are representative of the full spectrum of case management core competencies for entry-level case managers.

    Subject Matter Domains For QPCM:
    1. Job Responsibilities and Core Competencies
      • Case Management Overview
      • Job Responsibilities
    2. Health Care Delivery Systems and Reimbursement Concepts
      • Compliance Issues
      • Regulatory Issues
    3. Utilization Review and Management
    4. Transitional and Discharge Planning
    5. Quality and Outcomes Management
    6. Legal and Ethical Issues
      • Legal Issues in Case Management
      • Ethical Issues in Case Management
    7. Leadership Skills and Concepts
      • Critical Thinking
      • Psychosocial Aspects
        • Motivational Interviewing
        • Conflict Resolution
    8. Disease Management Concepts
    9. Practical Considerations
      • Case Management Credentials
      • Job Stress and Success Factors


  • Are special accommodations available?
    Examination administration sites are selected with access for candidates with physical disabilities.

    Three hours are scheduled to take the QPCM exam. If additional time is necessary because of special needs or because English is a candidate's second language, you may request a time extension.

    If you require special assistance of any type, this request must be made in writing at the time of your application.

    Please email or call for more information regarding special testing arrangements.


  • How will I be notified of my exam results?
    Applicants will receive a Pass or Fail notification immediately upon completion of their examination.



Certification Renewal
See 'How it Works' page for more details
  • Can I renew the QPCM certification?
    Yes, this certification can be renewed every 2 years by satisfying one of the two renewal requirements described below.

  • What are the renewal requirements for QPCM?
    The QPCM certification renewal requirements can be met in one of two ways:
    1. Complete 20 hours of approved continuing education* units every 2 years.

      These CEUS must be from one of the following domains:
      • Case Management / General Review
      • Utilization Review
      • Disease Management
      • Affordable Care Act
      • Ethics

      A copy of all CEU Certificates of Completion must be received in the QPCM national office no later than 30 days prior to the renewal date.

      *Approved continuing education (CE) courses must be offered by a provider who is recognized by one or more state Boards of Nursing.

    2. Renew through re-taking of QPCM certification exam. The exam must be taken and passed prior to the renewal deadline.


  • Can I get an extension of my renewal deadline?
    Certificants may renew thier certification up to 1 year following the expiration date.


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