ABNS – American Board of Nursing Specialties

About Us

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ABNS is a not-for-profit, membership organization governed by an elected group of member representatives. We are focused on improving patient outcomes and consumer protection by promoting specialty nursing certification. ABNS member organizations represent almost 750,000 certified registered nurses worldwide in a variety of settings. We have a strong, unified voice. Becoming an ABNS member organization is the best way to connect with other nursing credentialing organizations and dialogue about the specific issues certified nurses and those seeking certification face. Click here to read the ABNS Fact Sheet.


Supported by funding from the Macy Foundation, ABNS was incorporated in 1991 after three years of dialogue within the nursing community to create uniformity in nursing certification and to increase public awareness of the value of quality certification to health care. Certification, as defined by the ABNS, is the formal recognition of the specialized knowledge, skills, and experience demonstrated by the achievement of standards identified by a nursing specialty to promote optimal health outcomes.


Bearing in mind that an organization's vision statement provides a clear and compelling roadmap or direction for where it's going, the ABNS vision is all that and more!

Specialty nursing certification is THE standard by which the public recognizes quality nursing care!


ABNS promotes the value of specialty nursing certification to all stakeholders.


  • ABNS is the authoritative resource and voice for issues of specialty nursing certification.
  • ABNS ensures organizational vitality with sustainability.
  • ABNS advances knowledge regarding specialty nursing certification through research.
  • ABNS supports continuing competence as a means for ensuring patient safety.
  • ABNS promotes accreditation to recognize quality specialty nursing certification programs.


Our organizational values provide the guiding principles for all that we do. They serve as the foundation for the decisions we make and the activities we engage in.

ABNS is committed to:


ABNS exhibits integrity and earns trust through demonstrated member responsiveness, transparency in all activities and decision-making processes, and a commitment to an accreditation program based on peer-reviewed and research-based standards.

Consumer Protection

As an association comprised of specialty nursing certification organizations, ABNS supports the role certified nurses play in promoting optimal health outcomes and ensures that its accreditation standards are driven by the needs of health care consumers.


ABNS is committed to providing the highest level of quality products and services and will engage in evidence-based improvement activities to ensure that quality, as defined by the members, is consistently achieved.

Collegiality, Inclusion, and Mutual Respect

ABNS encourages and respects diversity of thought. We embrace the belief that we can achieve more as a group than any of us can as individual member organizations.


ABNS promotes excellence as the minimum desirable standard for specialty nursing.


Annual Organizational Reports are prepared and disseminated during the Annual Spring Assembly meeting to reflect the accomplishments and activities over the past year. To read the most recent Report, click the link below:


Click here to review the ABNS orientation presentation and share with your organization's Board of Directors.

Please Note

Regarding Verification of Credentials
ABNS and ABSNC do not verify certification credentials of individual certified nurses. To verify a credential, contact the certifying agency that granted the credential. ABNS and ABSNC do not administer certification programs.

This website contains information specific to specialty nursing certification and is not intended or designed to give medical or nursing advice.

Contact Us

3416 Primm Lane
Birmingham, AL 35216 USA
Fax: 205-823-2760


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