Nine Core Competencies

While no applicant is expected to be proficient in all areas, the nine core competencies are skill sets that the Certification and Renewal Committee will examine upon review of the applicant’s portfolio. Applicants must ensure that the professional experience, work products, letters of recommendation, and professional development hours (PDH) submitted reflect expertise and strength in these areas. For those applying for the Clinician and Professional levels, the written examination is focused on the following nine core competencies:


1. Finance
  • Cost justification
  • Budgeting
  • Vendor negotiation (if necessary)
2. Team Leadership
  • Inclusion of a cross-disciplinary team
  • Multidisciplinary collaboration within the organization
3. Policy and Procedure Deployment
  • Develops written SPHM policy and procedures
  • Obtains management and staff acceptance


4. Training Deployment
  • Develops training programs
  • Presents training programs
  • Modifies and customizes training materials
  • Conducts skills validation
5. Clinical Knowledge and Experience
  • Working knowledge of the interactions between patient condition, treatment, patient handling requirements, and limitations
  • Effectively communicate with staff (including nurses and administrators) the benefits that SPHM has for patients
6. Risk Analysis and Control
  • Understands and relates the principles of ergonomics and biomechanics to patient handling risks and ergonomic control measures
  • Identifies appropriate countermeasures, including product selection
  • Performs incident/accident/near-miss investigation
  • Tracks and trends injury data
  • Conducts root-cause analyses (RCAs)


7. Program Promotion
  • Internal promotion activities
  • External promotion activities
8. Program Audit
  • Establishes and tracks performance metrics
  • Conducts a review of program elements
  • Implements program enhancements based on a review of data
9. Unit-Specific Customization
  • Conducts clinical, unit-based ergonomic evaluations to determine appropriate patient handling technology recommendations
  • Integrates SPHM technology and procedures into care pathways
  • Develops unit-specific changes into policy and procedures (e.g. those related to program implementation, bariatric patient care, maintenance/repair procedures, storage, and any other issues impacting the use of patient handling technology)