Certified Central Service Vendor Partner (CCSVP)
As a vendor, it can take a long time to set an appointment with a Central Service/Sterile Processing (CS/SP) management team, and you are lucky to receive a few precious minutes of their undivided attention. The Certified Central Service Vendor Partner (CCSVP) certification program is designed to recognize vendors who have demonstrated knowledge of CS/SP concepts and processes including the decontamination, inspection, assembly, packaging and sterilization of reusable surgical instruments.
Completing the CCSVP course and obtaining your certification will help to open doors for you in CS/SP. The management team will know that as a Certified Vendor you are well versed in the departmental operations and the difficulties their staff encounter daily. The CCSVP course will give you an inside look at CS/SP, building your knowledge from decontamination all the way to the key decision-making protocols. You will achieve a deeper level of connection and credibility with your customers. When you are CCSVP certified, you are more than a salesperson. You are a solution provider.
To earn CCSVP certification, candidates are required to successfully demonstrate knowledge through the completion of an online course, specific Central Service/Sterile Processing Department observations, and successful completion of an examination developed to measure the understanding of general central services and infection prevention topics. CCSVPs are required to recertify annually through completion of continuing education requirements.
Upon completion of the online portion of the course, you will be ready to start preparing for the certification exam.
How to Prepare for the Examination
To study for the CCSVP certification, the following course is required:
- Online Course: IAHCSMM offers an online course that is designed to prepare vendors for the CCSVP exam. You can find out more about the course by calling 800.962.8274 or by visiting the CCSVP Program page.
(Please note that the course is preparation for the exam; passing the course does not equate to Certification.)
Content & Composition of the Examination
The CCSVP exam will test your proficiency in these areas:
• Introduction to the Central Service Department
• CS Processes: Decontamination
• CS Processes: Assembly & Packaging
• CS Processes: Sterilization
• Inventory Management/Distribution Systems & Vendor Relationships
• The Impact of Regulations & Standards on CS
The exam is computer based and no writing instruments are needed (a written version of the exam is not available.) The test is comprised of 150 multiple choice questions and you will have 2.25 hours to complete the exam. Questions can be marked for review and answered or changed later in the exam. A 15 minute tutorial describing how to take the exam on the computer precedes the test and is also available online, here. For more information regarding the testing process please see the Certification Testing section.
Requirements for the Examination
To sit for the CCSVP examination two rounds of clinical observation are required. You must complete and provide documentation (on the exam application as indicated) of a minimum of 32 hours of observation prior to applying to take the exam. The hours must be split equally between the two healthcare facilities and broken down into the following areas of experience at each:
- Decontamination (5 Hours)
- Inspection, Assembly, and Packaging (5 Hours)
- Sterilization (4 Hours)
- Sterile Storage & Distribution Systems (2 Hours)
Provisional testing is not available for CCSVP examinations. All hours of observation must be completed in full before applying to take the exam. Hours must have been accumulated within the past three years.
Please note that the cost of the mandatory online CCSVP course includes one attempt at the CCSVP certification exam. Any necessary retake exams would be subject to the full exam fee of $125 USD.
Verification of Examination Requirements
Hands-on experience is required for your examination, and documentation of that experience must be provided on the exam application as indicated. No other documentation is necessary or acceptable.
The sections of your application documenting your experience must be completed by your department's immediate manager/supervisor. An individual in a leadership role within the department cannot document their own experience; they are still required to have their immediate manager complete all required documentation. The required experience must be current, meaning that it has to have been accrued within the past 5 years at most.
Provided they are in a position above your own then experience hours can be documented by:
- Lead Techs, Coordinators, or Supervisors
- Managers, Chiefs, Directors, or Administrators
- Hospital-based Educators or Trainers
Hours cannot be documented by technicians or private instructors. In order to verify experience, all contact information provided for the manager or supervisor documenting your hours must be current or your application will be rejected.
Hands-on hours can be accumulated on a paid or volunteer basis and you need not be currently employed or volunteering with a facility in order to test. All hours must be completed prior to testing.
Applications requiring hands-on experience may be subject to verification before processing. Once selected for verification an application cannot be processed further until the manager/supervisor documenting the applicant's hours of experience can be contacted and the experience confirmed. If the listed manager/supervisor cannot be reached for confirmation the application will be returned unprocessed. If the manager/supervisor is reached but refutes the information submitted in any way, the application will be sent to the Certification Council for further investigation and review.
Applicants who have submitted a completed application and who are notified that they do not meet the eligibility requirements may appeal this decision by sending a written notice of the appeal to the Certification Council within 30 days of the time stamp on the eligibility decision. Appeals that cannot be resolved to the applicant's satisfaction will be forwarded by the Certification Manager to the Council for review along with any relevant information from the initial review of the application. Written notice of the final decision will be sent to the applicant within 30 days of the review. The decision of the CC will be final.