Recognising advanced level practice in nursing
What is credentialing?
Credentialing is the process of assessing the background and legitimacy of nurses to practice at an advanced level through assessing their qualifications, experience and competence.
Credentialing allows nurses to gain formal recognition of their level of expertise and skill in their clinical practice, their leadership, their education and their research in a way that is recognisable to colleagues, employers, patients and the public.
Credentialing is open to nurses who can demonstrate that they are working at an advanced level, practise in the NHS or independent sector and are either members or non-members of the RCN.
Nurses will require a relevant master's qualification, non-medical prescribing rights and an active membership of the NMC to credential.
Nurses who successfully achieve the full master’s qualification, including non-medical prescribing, from an RCN accredited university will have the credential awarded, at no cost, for the first three years. You can view a full list of RCN accredited programmes here.
Transitional arrangements are in place for nurses who do not have a full master's but are currently working at an advanced level. Once a nurse has gained the credential through these arrangements RCN does not expect them to complete a full master's in the future to retain the award. Apply here
For application queries please contact email@example.com and one of the team will assist.
Please note - whilst the RCN offices are closed there will be a delay in supplying badges and certificates to successful applicants
Our transitional model (Model D - Level 6 and/or 7 credits route) has been extended and will now close 31 December 2021
Nurses working at an advanced level discuss credentialing
How does it work?
Those who are successful in being awarded the credential will be included on a publicly available database of credentialed nurses, and will receive a badge and certificate. Opportunities to become ambassadors for advanced practice for RCN also exist alongside a dedicated annual CPD event.
There will be a cost for being included on the database and this will be renewed every three years. The initial fee is £275 inc VAT. After three years the renewal fee is £125 inc VAT.
Please see the step-by-step guide to credentialing for a complete breakdown of the process. It is expected that the process will take up to 2 weeks.
Please see the Credentialing Terms and Conditions for the refund, cancellation and appeals policy.
Am I eligible?
Please review the credentialing models in order to gain a clear understanding of which one you fit under before applying for Credentialing.
For models C & D there is a necessity to have undertaken a Health Assessment module at level 6 or 7. Health Assessment will include:
- History taking
- Holistic assessment that includes head to toe physical examination
- Making a diagnosis
- OSCE style assessment
If you are unsure of what model for Credentialing you fit under, then please see the Credentialing Models Decision Aid for further assistance.
How can I take part?
The credentialing service is now available to all nurses working at an advanced level. To register your interest, or to receive an application pack, please complete the form on this page.
If you have a question about credentialing or wish to provide feedback to inform our pilot, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you require a transcript from the RCN as part of credentialing, please contact email@example.com
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