The CCHP Examination
The CCHP examination measures a candidate’s knowledge, understanding and application of the content areas covered on the exam, including standards and guidelines essential to the delivery of appropriate health care, the basic legal principles for practicing in a correctional health care system, the ethical obligations of correctional health professionals and the role of health care professionals in delivering care in the correctional environment. The examination is not intended to measure clinical competency. Some questions pertain to specific settings (e.g., jail, prison or juvenile facility); others are more general in nature.
Candidates are allowed two hours to complete the examination, which is a proctored, written test composed of 80 to 100 multiple-choice questions.
Preparing to Take the Examination
A Candidate Handbook is sent to all applicants to help them prepare for the examination and also is available here as a download. The handbook provides a detailed list of content areas covered on the examination. It does not contain the study materials but instead is meant to help direct your studies.
The following publications contain the material covered on the examination. We strongly recommend that you study these books to improve examination performance.
- Standards for Health Services in Prisons
- Standards for Health Services in Jails
- Standards for Health Services in Juvenile Detention and Confinement Facilities
- Correctional Health Care: Guidelines for the Management of an Adequate Delivery System (free download)
The Standards may be purchased as a discounted CCHP Study Package or individually (see the NCCHC catalog). Although health care delivery in jails and prisons differs significantly, there is much overlap in the jail and prison standards, so you may wish to purchase only one of the two. Alternatively, your employer, colleagues or library may have these resources. Many CCHP candidates study together and share one set of materials.
See these sample test questions for an idea of what to expect when you take the exam.
Exam Dates and application deadlines
Examinations are offered throughout the year, including at NCCHC's annual conferences and three times a year at regional test centers across the country. Some regional test centers are preestablished; others are added based on candidate requests. We try to make reasonable accommodations for candidates who are farther than a three-hour driving distance from a test center, although fulfillment of such requests cannot be guaranteed. Information on how to request a regional test center is enclosed in the confirmation packet; requests must be made at least 90 days before the exam date. Please note that a site is eligible to host an exam only when it has at least five examinees.
The CCHP program makes every effort to ensure that test centers are in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Candidates who require special accommodations must submit a written request at least 90 days before the examination date.
Examinations are scored electronically. Results are sent in writing within eight weeks. Unsuccessful candidates may take the exam two additional times within a two-year period from the date of initial application approval. The reexamination fee is $45.
Deferment and Cancellation Policies
The exam may be deferred up to one year from the date the application is approved. A candidate must request deferment in writing at least 10 business days before the originally scheduled examination date.
To cancel the application, a written cancellation request must be received at least 10 business days before the examination date. $100 of the application fee will be refunded.