If you’ve been working as a nurse for a long time now, then you probably remember the process of getting your license rather vaguely. If, however, you ended up needing to get recertified, all of those memories would flood right back, and you wouldn’t feel very happy about it. Plus, given that you have a lot of experience, you would probably feel that the situation isn’t fair and that the fact that you are great at your job should mean that you don’t need to be sort of tested once again.
Well, there is a chance that you might not need to be tested again, thanks to a little something called Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC): https://www.ncsbn.org/nlc-faqs.htm
Anyway, why am I even mentioning the idea of having to be relicensed? Well, there are a few scenarios in which you might get worried about your license not being valid. For example, you might want to move to a different state due to your private life, and you don’t want to risk not being able to work in that new state. Or, you might want to adopt the lifestyle of a travel nurse, which can carry the same risk.
If you’ve been worrying about this for a while, then there is a chance that you have started doing some research about it already. During the research, you have come across the NLC mentioned above, and you have started wondering whether a compact nursing license could be the right solution for you. The possibility of being able to work in multiple states without worrying about licenses every time you move sounds amazing, doesn’t it? So, it’s no wonder that you are trying to figure out if this is something you can do.
What Is NLC?
Before I get to answering the question of whether you can get such a license that would allow you to work in multiple states or not, let me first give you an explanation of what NLC is. The Nursing Licensure Compact allows nurses to work across multiple states with the same license. Now, there is a sort of a trick here, however. Perhaps calling it a trick is not right, since it is merely a requirement that needs to be met, and not by you for that matter.
In simple words, this type of license allows you to work in all compact states, which further indicates that some states aren’t part of the compact. For those states that are, you won’t need to obtain any additional licenses to work as a nurse. On the other hand, if you’re planning to move to a place that isn’t a part of such an agreement, you will still need to meet some additional requirements. We’ll get to this part a bit later, though.
Can You Get The License?
If you have been reading carefully, then you must have already understood what the answer to this specific question is. In short – yes. You can certainly get the multistate license if you find that you need it, and it is often a good idea for all nurses to get it even if they don’t need it at a particular point in time because you never know what might happen in the future. Does this, however, mean that you won’t have to even think about meeting any requirements to get permission to work in all the compact states?
Well, the answer to that one is no. In different words, there are still some requirements that you need to meet to be able to apply for this specific solution. The good thing is that the requirements aren’t complicated at all and that you are probably already eligible for this particular license.
Simply said, there are only two requirements that you need to have met. For starters, you need to have proof of residence in a compact state. And, then, you also need to have an active Registered Nurse license in that particular state. As you can see, there is nothing complicated about it. So, if you find that you do meet the requirements, feel free to apply for the NLC, further explained here, and get the opportunity to work anywhere you want.
Which States Can You Work In With It?
As mentioned above, not all states are a part of the compact, meaning that you need to check this before making any concrete moves towards relocating somewhere or applying for the NLC. Currently, 38 states are already a part of this agreement or that are pending participation. So, what you have to do is check precisely whether the states that you are interested in are a part of this solution, which won’t be difficult, as the info is easily accessible online.
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