The Convention Industry Council (CIC) has moved another step closer to offering a special certificate for those who work in the health care meetings sector. In October, a beta exam will be available for those interested in receiving the Certified Meeting Professional-Healthcare designation (CMP-HC).
After further refinement following the beta test, the first official exam will be available in May 2014.
Karen Katowski, the CIC’s CEO, told MedExpo earlier this year that a special certification for health care meeting planners is becoming ever more important with the impending implementation of the Affordable Care Act, as the rules and laws regulating marketing in health care become more complicated.
“Because of all the requirements that are in play and because there is a need to have a qualified workforce, this is something that is needed,” Katowski says. “That is the driving force.”
A group of more than 100 volunteers has worked for more than a year to develop the parameters of the body of knowledge health care meeting planners should have, creating an exam that would allow planners to demonstrate their command of the field.
The beta exam will be available Oct. 7-21 at Prometric testing centers throughout the United States. For test applications, go to the CIC website.
To qualify for the new CMP-HC certification, applicants must already have their CMP. In other words, the health care component is an “add-on” to the traditional certification and is not intended as a replacement.
Applicants also must have three years of experience in health care meeting management and 15 hours of professional development specifically related to health care meetings.
Both the International Medical Meeting Planners Association and the Healthcare Convention & Exhibition Association provide the professional development necessary for the certification, as does Meeting Planners International and the Professional Convention Management Association.
The beta test—and, likely, the exams to follow, which will be available twice a year—will have 100 questions. What will constitute a passing grade will be determined once the beta exams are graded and evaluated. Because of the additional evaluation, it is likely those who take the beta test will have to wait six to eight weeks for their results. Those who do pass the beta test, which is being limited to 150 people, will be the first to receive the CMP-HC certification.
Typically, the cost of the test will be $155 for an application fee and $255 for the exam fee. However, those taking the inaugural beta exam will have the application fee waived.