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CSSM Recertification

CSSM-certified status is conferred by CCI for a period of three years, at which time a CSSM may seek recertification. The CSSM recertification process acknowledges the need for active work in the maintenance of continuing competency. The practice and professional activities requirements facilitate the maintenance of current skills and acquisition of new ones through exposure to the practice setting and through application of information obtained through continuing and/or formal education.

Steps to Recertify Your CSSM Credential

  1. Meet the recertification eligibility requirements
  2. Complete one of the recertification methods
  3. Submit an online application
  4. Pay the applicable fee

Recertification Eligibility Requirements

CSSM recertification applicants must meet the following requirements at the time of application.

  1. Be currently licensed, without provision or condition, as a registered nurse in the country where currently practicing.
  2. Be CSSM-certified.
  3. Be currently employed in perioperative nursing in the area of surgical services management. The management role may be overseeing personnel, a budget or a program. Employment as a consultant or interim staff will meet this requirement. Work experience in a non-paid, volunteer capacity is acceptable.
  4. Have worked a minimum of 1500 hours in surgical services management, within the three-year recertification cycle.

In addition to the above eligibility requirements, all applicants must fulfill the requirements of the recertification method they choose. CSSMs cannot be recertified until the year of certification expiration.

CSSM Recertification Options

Certificants may recertify by taking the CSSM examination, or using the Professional Development Points method.

Recertification by the Professional Development Points Method

Certificants may recertify by completing professional development activities in the following categories.

  1. Continuing Education
  2. Academic Study
  3. Service as a Board or Committee Member
  4. Clinical Inquiry
  5. Academic Instructor
  6. Precepting/Mentoring
  7. Professional Presentations
  8. Authoring
  9. Volunteer, CCI Test Development Committee

A maximum number of points are allowed for each activity except for the Academic Study category. In the Academic Study category an unlimited number of points may be earned. All activities must be completed within the three-year accrual cycle.

The number of points for the first recertification period is linked to an individual’s performance on the CSSM certification examination. Each certificant is given a score report upon completion of the certification examination which details competency levels for each of the seven subject areas. The scores for these areas will be expressed as categories of Below Competency, At Competency and Above Competency.

For complete details on recertifying by this method, please refer to the CSSM Candidate Handbook.

Recertification by Exam

Certificants may recertify by taking the CSSM examination, and must apply for and pass the exam by December 31 of the final year of their certification or the CSSM credential will lapse. The final date to apply for recertification by exam is November 30 of the year that recertification is due. Any Recertification by Exam applications received October 1 – November 30 will have a test window that ends December 31 of that year. Candidates should note that the testing window ends upon the expiration of the credential.

Deadline & Fees

CSSM-certified status is conferred by CCI for a period of three years, at which time a CSSM may seek recertification. Online applications for recertification open on January 1 of the year a certificant is due to recertify. Application for recertification must be made by December 31st of the year the certification expires using one of the recertification processes in effect at the time the recertification is due.

The CSSM recertification fee must be submitted at the time of application. No application will be processed without the accompanying fee. All outstanding debts to CCI must be paid by December 31 of the year the certificant is due to recertify.

Recertification Application

The CSSM recertification application is available online.

Emeritus Status

CSSMs who have retired from surgical services management ay use the designation CSSM(E), provided that the retiree pays a one-time fee and submits an application. The application for emeritus status must be submitted and accepted prior to the current credential having lapsed, as it is not available after that time.

Frequently Asked Questions about CSSM Recertification

My Credential Has Expired. How Do I Reactivate It?
A lapsed credential may be reactivated by applying online to retake the CSSM exam

What Can I Do if I Am Not Eligible to Recertify?
You can file for an extension of your certification by applying for an Extension Year. If you complete the requirements for the Extension Year process your credential is still active until your new expiration date and gives you one additional year to earn the contact hours or complete the activities needed to recertify your credential. Please contact CCI’s Credentialing Specialist at 1-888-257-2667 for more information.

How Does the Extension Year Process Work?
Some key points regarding the Extension Year process:
1. The process is only available once every 6 years or 2 recertification cycles for the CSSM certification.
2. You must apply in the year that you are due to recertify.
3. The Extension Year lasts one calendar year and there are no extensions to that time period.
4. The accrual period to earn contact hours or complete professional development activities is extended by one additional year. The accrual period for contact hours / points activities is the original accrual period plus 1 year.
5. Extension Year participants are subject to quality assurance audit processes just as other nurses who recertify their credentials.

What is the Fee for Applying for the Extension Year?
The fee is $195. No refunds are given.

Do I Have the Option of Taking the CSSM Certification Exam to Recertify During the Extension Year?
Recertification by taking the certification examination while in Extension Year status is not permitted.

What Else Am I Required to Do to Fulfill the Requirements for the Extension Year?
All fields (e.g., contact information and place of employment) in the certificant’s account must be updated. To recertify your CSSM credential following your Extension Year, you must meet all the recertification requirements in effect at that time and pay the recertification fee.

When Can I Apply for Recertification Following My Extension Year?
You may apply for recertification at any time in the year following completion of the Extension Year.


Download the CSSM Certification Handbook