Cardiovascular Nurse Certification

Learn what is required to become certified as a cardiovascular nurse. Get information about certification options as well as how this credential can impact your employment. Schools offering Cardiovascular Technology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Cardiovascular Certification?

Cardiovascular nurse certification is a professional credential that registered nurses (RNs) with experience working in cardiac care units or working with patients with heart disease can earn. There are two organizations that offer cardiovascular, also referred to as cardiac vascular, nursing certification: the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) Certification Corporation. Cardiovascular certification demonstrates that you have training and experience working with cardiovascular patients and that your knowledge and skills meet a high standard for professionals in your area.

Certification Specialization Working and caring for patients within the cardiac care unit
Prerequisites Registered Nurse license with two years of experience working with cardiovascular patients; also, additional education may be required
Certification Benefits Increased job prospects, improved skills, industry recognition
Job Outlook (2016-2026)15% growth (for registered nurses)*
Median Salary (2018)$71,730 (for registered nurses)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

How Can I Become Certified?

If you have been an RN for at least two years and you have experience in working with cardiovascular patients, you may be eligible to take a certification exam. You'll also need to complete continuing education hours specific to cardiovascular nursing.

As an RN, you can earn the ANCC's cardiac vascular board certification (RN-BC) by meeting education and experience requirements and passing an exam. If you're an RN that specializes in critical care, you may want to earn the critical care registered nurse certification (CCRN) from the AACN Certification Corporation. You'll need an initial certification, such as the CCRN, to go on and earn AACN's subspecialty certifications, the cardiac medicine certification (CMC) and the cardiac surgery certification (CSC).

What Can Certification Do For Me?

Certification can benefit you in multiple ways. First, it shows that you are a professional who meets a high standard of knowledge and skill in cardiovascular nursing. You will be able to show your credentials at the end of your name on business cards, resumes and signatures, allowing patients and potential employers to be aware or your certification. The Preventative Cardiovascular Nurses Association says that certification may improve your chances for promotion and may make you a more desirable job candidate than someone who has not earned certification.

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