The Certified Healthcare Facility Manager (CHFM) exam was created by the American Hospital Association (AHA) as a final step in CHFM certification, to identify and award individuals who are prepared to manage healthcare facilities.
Healthcare facility managers’ responsibilities include maintenance and operation, code compliance, design and construction, finance management and the administration of these facilities, among other things. The exam is intended to ensure that those who receive such certification are truly capable of handling all of those responsibilities adequately.
Am I Eligible to Take the CHFM Exam?
In order to take the CHFM exam, candidates must first accomplish one of the following:
- A baccalaureate degree from an accredited university as well as at least three years of associated engineering and management/supervisory experience in a healthcare setting.
- An associate degree from an accredited university and at least five years of associated engineering and management/supervisory experience in a healthcare setting.
- A high school diploma or an equivalent, as well as at least seven years of associated engineering experience, five of which in a management/supervisory role in a healthcare setting.
How Is the AHA’s CHFM Exam Structured?
The CHFM exam consists of 110 multiple-choice questions, ten of which are unscored, trial questions interspersed throughout the test. Participants are given two hours to complete the full exam.
There are three types of multiple-choice questions within the exam. Participants are asked to analyze information and determine answers based on their usefulness, to recall specific information and to apply knowledge to new or changing situations.
What Specific Content Is Covered in this Healthcare Facility Manager Certification Exam?
Content on the CHFM exam is divided into five main categories, each of which comprises a different number of total questions and a different division of question types. The exam’s content is structured as follows:
- Compliance (25 total questions: 15 knowledge application and 10 knowledge recall)
- Design, Planning and Construction (18 total questions: 10 knowledge application, seven knowledge recall and one knowledge analysis)
- Operations and Maintenance (28 total questions: 17 knowledge application and 11 knowledge recall)
- Finance (15 total question: nine knowledge application, three knowledge recall and three knowledge analysis)
- Administration (14 total questions: Eight knowledge application, three knowledge recall and three knowledge analysis)
How Is the CHFM Exam Administered?
The CHFM exam is computer administered in most cases. It is offered at more than 200 testing centers located around the United States. Prospective participants can register for the exam on AHA’s website and must schedule their exam appointment within 90 days of confirming their eligibility for the CHFM exam.
In some special circumstances, such as during conferences, the exam is offered via laptop or as a paper-and-pencil exam.
Applying for the CHFM exam costs $275 for members of the American Society for Health Care Engineering (ASHE) or other AHA membership groups and $425 for nonmembers.
What Do I Need to Know for the Day of My Healthcare Facility Management Certification Exam?
It is recommended that participants in the CHFM exam report to their designated testing room at the time on their confirmation notice. The test won’t begin until all scheduled candidates are checked in for the exam, but no later than one hour after the designated start time. However, candidates who arrive more than 15 minutes after their scheduled testing time will not be admitted and will have to reschedule their examination time and pay a $100 rescheduling fee.
Participants must present two forms of identification in order to take the exam. These must be government issued, current and include the participant’s name, signature and photograph.
Participants are allowed to bring and use a silent, non-programmable calculator during the exam. However, the use of a personal computer or cell phone is not permitted. Calculators will be checked before the exam to ensure that they meet AHA requirements.
How Do I Receive My Score on the AHA CHFM Exam?
CHFM score reports are not reported via telephone or email. Participants will receive their preliminary score report before leaving the test center, which will indicate a “pass” or a “fail.” This report will also include a raw score of questions answered correctly in each of the five categories on the exam. Information about certification or certification renewal will be issued within four to six weeks of the exam and will be mailed directly to those participants who achieve certification or recertification.
An initial minimum passing score on the CHFM is determined via the Angoff method, which leverages judges to estimate the passing probability of each individual questions. These ratings are averaged to determine the minimum passing score.
How Can I Achieve a Passing Score on AHA’s Healthcare Facility Manager Certification Exam?
The CHFM exam is critical to those who want to advance their careers in healthcare facility management. It is meant to cover the wide variety of expertise needed to effectively operate a healthcare facility, which is by no means an easy task.
In order to get a good grasp on all of the information that could be included on the CHFM exam, prospective participants should spend the bulk of their study time leveraging a combination of a study guide and a set of flashcards. Mometrix Test Preparation, for instance, offers such a flashcard set and study guide that can put exam hopefuls on the right path to success.