There are a large number of wound care programs that lead to wound care certification. Choosing the appropriate program for your level of qualification and experience is not always clear. Below is a brief guide to help you decide which wound care certification is right for you.
Question #1: Bachelor’s Degree/BSN?
No Bachelor’s Degree/BSN?
If you do not hold a Bachelor’s degree, the most appropriate wound care programs may lead to a Wound Care Certified (WCC) or Certified Wound Care Associate (CWCA) qualification.
For the CWCA program, you must be able to provide documentation of 3 years of clinical experience in wound care. This program is ideal for associate-degree nurses, physical therapy assistants, all certified healthcare assistants, healthcare administrators, and other non-medical professionals with a career in the healthcare industry. Certification is valid for 10 years, and re-certification by self-assessment examination must be undertaken.
The WoundEducators.com MA Wound Certification Course, CNA Wound Certification Course, and LPN-LVN Wound Care Certification Course will help non-bachelor healthcare professionals prepare for the WCC or the CWCA wound care exam.
RN Degree, but No Bachelor’s Degree/BSN?
Prior to June 2019, the ABWM’s Wound Specialist (CWS) wound care program was intended for individuals with a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Doctoral degree who hold a current license as a healthcare professional. BSNs were able to test for the CWS but associate degree RNs were not. Luckily, the ABWM recognized this discrepancy and opened the CWS eligibility to include RNs. In addition to the CWS wound care program, RNs can also pursue the WCC certification mentioned above.
The WoundEducators.com RN Wound Certification Course will help Associate RNs prepare for the CWS or WCC wound care exam.
If you are currently licensed as a registered nurse (RN) and have a baccalaureate degree, you may choose to become a Certified Wound Care Nurse (CWCN) or a Certified Wound Specialist (CWS) if you have three or more years of experience in wound care.
- CWCN Certification Requirements (WOCNCB)
- CWS Certification Requirements (ABWM)
- WCC Certification Requirements (NAWCO)
The WoundEducators.com BSN Wound Certification Course will help prepare BSNs for the CWCN, CWS, or WCC wound care certification exam.
Question #2: Masters Degree?
If you hold a Masters degree and an active, unrestricted license, you should pursue the CWS exam or the WCC exam. Examples of CWS candidates are Physician Assistants or Physical Therapists.
Our PT Wound Certification Course, the Physician Assistant Wound Certification Course, and the Physician Wound Certification Course, will all help to prepare you for the CWCN and the CWS wound certification exam.
Doctoral Degree, MD, DO, or DPM?
For physicians, the Certified Wound Specialist (CWSP) certification is available for medics including medical doctors (MDs), Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (DOs) and Doctors of Podiatric Medicine (DPMs) who have 3 or more years of clinical wound care experience. Finally, the Council for Medical Education and Testing (CMET) also provides certification for physicians specializing in wound care.
- CWSP Certification Requirements (ABWM)
- WCC Certification Requirements (NAWCO)
- CMET Certification Requirements
The WoundEducators.com ”Physician Wound Certification Course“, will help to prepare you for the CWSP wound certification exam and the CMET wound certification exam.
Question #3: Years of Wound Care Experience?
Once you’ve decided which wound care course(s) are available for you, you can narrow down your choice by the experience each requires.
Three or More Years of Wound Care Experience
If you have at least three years of wound care experience, you can apply for the ABWM exam that matches your license/degree requirements above.
The required three years of wound care experience does not have to be sequential, and a wound care job title is not a requirement. As long as you can prove you have had enough combined experience managing wounds throughout your career, you can meet the ABWM experience requirements. The experience (3 years) is standard for the CWCA, CWS, and CWSP certifications.
Two or More Years of Wound Care Experience
The WCC is available for healthcare professionals who have two years of full-time or four years of part-time experience in an approved profession with ongoing, active involvement in the care of wounded patients or in wound care management, education, or research directly related to wound care.
Less Than 1 Year of Wound Care Experience
If you do not have 2-3 years of wound care experience, you can elect to complete 120 hours of hands-on clinical training with an approved NAWCO preceptor.
Learn More with Our Wound Care Program Options
Interested in learning more about wound care and certification? Browse through our wound care certification courses for information on our comprehensive range of education options to suit healthcare professionals across the full spectrum of qualifications and experience.