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State‐by‐state guide for RN license renewal requirements

Law, Emily

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Author Information

Emily Law is a freelance writer in Philadelphia, Pa.

To add or change a listing, e-mail pwolf@lww.com.

This list is available online at http://www.nursing2006.com (click “Resources and Surveys”).

Here's a list of the state boards of nursing, their contact information, and continuing-education (CE) or practice requirements for RNs renewing their licenses. Even states with no such requirements charge a fee and require timely renewal. Requirements for reinstating a license, renewing an inactive license, or renewing an advanced practice license may be different; for details, contact your state board. If you're an LPN, please contact your state board of nursing for details.

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Alabama Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.abn.state.al.us

Phone: 334-242-4060 or 1-800-656-5318

E-mail: abn@abn.state.al.us

Renewal requirements: 24 hours of a mandatory board-provided course on board functions, the Nurse Practice Act, regulations, professional conduct, and accountability.

Alaska Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.dced.state.ak.us/occ/pnur.htm

Phone: 907-269-8161

Renewal requirements: Two of the following every 2 years:

* 30 contact hours of approved CE

* 30 hours of participation in approved professional activities

* 320 hours of approved nursing employment.

Arizona State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.azbn.gov

E-mail: arizona@azbn.gov (include your name and phone number)

Phone: 602-889-5150

Renewal requirement: One of the following within the past 5 years:

* 960 hours of RN-licensed practice

* board-approved refresher course

* advanced degree (RN to BSN, MSN, or doctorate; or advanced practice certificate).

Arkansas State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.arsbn.org/

Phone: 501-686-2700

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 2 years:

* 15 practice-focused contact hours

* certification or recertification by national certifying body

* academic course in nursing or related field

* evidence requested by board.

California Board of Registered Nursing

Web site: http://www.rn.ca.gov

Phone: 916-322-3350

E-mail: webmasterbrn@dca.ca.gov

Renewal requirements: 30 contact hours of CE courses through board-approved providers within the past 2 years.

Colorado Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.dora.state.co.us/nursing

Phone: 303-894-2430

E-mail: nursing@dora.state.co.us

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Connecticut Board of Examiners for Nursing

Web site: http://www.dph.state.ct.us/

Phone: 860-509-7603

E-mail: webmaster.dph@po.state.ct.us

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 1 year.

Delaware Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.professionallicensing.state.de.us/boards/nursing/index.shtml

Phone: 302-744-4517

E-mail: iva.boardman@state.de.us

Renewal requirements: 30 contact hours of CE (except during first renewal period if you were licensed by exam) and one of the following:

* 1,000 practice hours within the past 5 years

* 400 practice hours within the past 2 years

* refresher course within the past 2 years

District of Columbia Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.dchealth.dc.gov

Phone: 202-724-4900

Renewal requirements: 24 contact hours of practice-related CE within the past 2 years. May be waived if, within the past 2 years, you have served as a speakerat an approved CE program or have had an article, chapter, or book you edited or authored published.

Florida Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.doh.state.fl.us/mqa/renewal/nurrenewals/nur_renewal.html

Phone: 850-487-3284

Renewal requirements: 25 contact hours of board-approved CE every 2 years (waived during first renewal period if you were licensed by exam), including 1 contact hour on HIV/AIDS, 2 contact hours on prevention of medical errors, and 1 contact hour on domestic violence. You may substitute courses in end-of-life or palliative health care for courses in HIV/AIDS education or domestic violence.

Georgia Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.sos.state.ga.us/plb/rn

Phone: 478-207-2440

E-mail: See web site for contact links

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Hawaii Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.hawaii.gov/dcca/areas/pvl/boards/nursing

Phone: 808-586-3000

E-mail: nursing@dcca.hawaii.gov

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Idaho Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www2.state.id.us/ibn/index.htm

Phone: 208-334-3110

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Illinois Department of Professional Regulation

Web site: http://www.idfpr.com/dpr/default.asp

Phone: 1-800-823-6100

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Indiana State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.in.gov/pla/bandc/isbn/

Phone: 317-234-2043

E-mail: pla2@pla.IN.gov

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Iowa Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.state.ia.us/government/nursing

Phone: 515-281-3264

E-mail: ibon@bon.state.ia.us

Renewal requirements: 36 contact hours of CE within the past 3 years. If license was first issued less than 3 years ago, 24 contact hours are required. If you regularly work with dependent adults or children, you must also complete 2 hours of training in abuse identification and reporting every 5 years.

Kansas State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.ksbn.org

Phone: 785-296-4929

Renewal requirements: 30 contact hours of interactive or independent CE within the past 2 years (waived for the first renewal after licensure).

Kentucky Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.kbn.ky.gov

Phone: 502-429-3300

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 2 years (waived for the first renewal after licensure):

* 14 contact hours

* national, practice-related certification or recertification

* completion of nursing research project as director, principal investigator, or co-investigator

* publication of nursing-related article

* professional nursing education presentation

* 120 hours as preceptor

* 7 contact hours plus satisfactory employment evaluation for CE.

You must also complete 3 contact hours of domestic violence education within the first 3 years after licensure (one time only), and 2 contact hours of HIV/AIDS education between 11/1/2002 and 10/31/2012.

Louisiana State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.lsbn.state.la.us

Phone: 225-763-3570 or 504-838-5332

Fax: 225-763-3580 or 504-838-5433

Renewal requirements: Renewal period is 1 year. Full-time nurses need 5 contact hours, part-time nurses need 10, and inactive nurses need 15; a contact hour is 50 minutes of participation in an approved educational activity. See Web site for more information, including hurricane-related updates.

Maine State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.maine.gov/boardofnursing

Phone: 207-287-1133

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Maryland Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.mbon.org/main.php

Phone: 410-585-1900

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 5 years:

* 1,000 practice-related hours

* board-approved refresher course.

Massachusetts Board of Registration in Nursing

Web site: http://www.mass.gov/dpl/boards/rn/

Phone: 617-973-0800

Renewal requirements: 15 contact hours of CE within the past 2 years (waived for first renewal after licensure).

Michigan Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.michigan.gov/mdch/0,1607,7-132-27417_27529_27542—,00.html

Phone: 517-335-0918

Renewal requirements: 25 contact hours of board-approved CE or related activities within the past 2 years.

Minnesota Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.state.mn.us/portal/mn/jsp/home.do?agency=NursingBoard

Phone: 612-617-2270

E-mail: NursingBoard@state.mn.us

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 2 years:

* 24 contact hours of CE (or: 1 contact hour per month of renewal period, if it's less than 2 years)

* certification in a nursing specialty

* board-approved professional activities

Mississippi Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.msbn.state.ms.us

Phone: 601-987-4188

E-mail: info@msbn.state.ms.us

Renewal requirements: None, as long as you have practiced as an RN (with or without pay) within the past 5 years. Renewal period is 2 years.

Missouri State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://pr.mo.gov/nursing.asp

Phone: 573-751-0681

E-mail: nursing@mail.state.mo.gov

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Montana State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.discoveringmontana.com/dli/nur

Phone: 406-841-2340

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Nebraska Health and Human Services System, Department of Regulation & Licensure

Web site: http://www.hhs.state.ne.us/crl/nursing/Rn-Lpn/rn-lpn.htm

Phone: 402-471-2133

Renewal requirements: One of the following (waived if licensed within the past 2 years; renewal period is 2 years):

* 500 practice hours within the past 5 years AND 20 contact hours of board-approved CE within the past 2 years (see Web site for details)

* graduated between 2 and 5 years ago, and completed at least 20 contact hours of board-approved CE

* board-approved refresher course within the past 5 years

* current or new certification in nursing specialty

* portfolio demonstrating current continuing competency goals and evidence of professional activity to meet those goals

Nevada State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.nursingboard.state.nv.us

Phone: 888-590-6726

E-mail: nursingboard@nsbn.state.nv.us

Renewal requirements: 30 contact hours of board-approved CE within the past 2 years. Effective 1/1/2005, the 30 hours must include 4 hours of a board-approved course on bioterrorism.

New Hampshire Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.nh.gov/nursing/

Phone: 603-271-2323

E-mail: boardquestions@nursing.state.nh.us

Renewal requirements: Within the past 2 years, 30 contact hours of board-approved CE or professional enhancement activities, plus one of the following:

* 400 practice hours within past 4 years

* board-approved reentry program

* successful completion of national nursing examination

New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs

Web site: http://www.state.nj.us/lps/ca/medical/nursing.htm

Phone: 973-504-6430

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

New Mexico Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.state.nm.us/clients/nursing/

Phone: 505-841-8340

E-mail: boardofnursing@state.nm.us

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 2 years:

* 30 contact hours of approved CE

* certification or recertification in a nursing specialty

New York State Education Department, Office of the Professions

Web site: http://www.op.nysed.gov/nursing.htm

Phone: 518-474-3817, ext. 120

E-mail: nursebd@mail.nysed.gov

Renewal requirements: CE course on infection control within the past 4 years. Renewal period is 4 years.

North Carolina Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.ncbon.com

Phone: 919-782-3211

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

North Dakota Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.ndbon.org

Phone: 701-328-9777

Renewal requirements: 12 contact hours of CE within the past 2 years, plus at least 400 practice hours within the past 4 years. Renewal period is 2 years.

State of Ohio Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.nursing.ohio.gov

Phone: 614-466-3947

Renewal requirements: 24 contact hours of CE, including 1 hour on Ohio nursing law. Renewal period is 2 years.

Oklahoma Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.youroklahoma.com/nursing

Phone: 405-962-1800

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Oregon State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.osbn.state.or.us

Phone: 503-731-4745

Renewal requirements: 960 practice hours within the past 5 years, plus (effective 1/1/2006) 7 contact hours of CE on pain management (see Web site under “Current Topics” link for details). Renewal period is 2 years.

Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.dos.state.pa.us/nurse

Phone: 717-783-7142

E-mail: ST-NURSE@state.pa.us

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Rhode Island Board of Nurse Registration and Nursing Education

Web site: http://www.health.state.ri.us/hsr/professions/nurses.php

Phone: 401-222-5700

Renewal requirements: 10 contact hours of CE within the past 2 years.

South Carolina Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.llr.state.sc.us/pol/nursing

Phone: 803-896-4550

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 2 years (or licensure period):

* 30 contact hours of CE

* certification or recertification by national certifying body

* completion of academic program in nursing or related field

* employer certification of competency and number of hours practiced

South Dakota Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.state.sd.us/doh/nursing

Phone: 605-362-2760

Renewal requirements: One of the following:

* 140 practice hours during any 12-month period within the past 6 years

* 480 total practice hours within the past 6 years.

If you don't meet either requirement, you must take a board-approved refresher course before your license will be renewed. Renewal period is 2 years.

Tennessee Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www2.state.tn.us/health/Boards/Nursing/index.htm

Phone: 615-532-3202

Renewal requirements: Proof that you've practiced part-time or full-time as an RN within the past 5 years, and proof of continuing competency within the past 2 years. To satisfy this requirement, you must complete 2 of 15 possible ways of maintaining competency. For complete list, see http://www2.state.tn.us/health/Downloads/nursing_announcement.pdf or visit the CE link at the Web site. Renewal period is 2 years.

Texas Board of Nurse Examiners

Web site: http://www.bne.state.tx.us

Phone: 512-305-7400

Renewal requirements: 20 contact hours of CE within the past 2 years, including a one-time, 2-contact-hour course on bioterrorism (complete before August 2007).

Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing

Web site: http://www.dopl.utah.gov/licensing/nurse.html

Phone: 801-530-6628

Renewal requirements: One of the following within the past 2 years:

* 400 practice hours

* 200 practice hours plus 15 contact hours of approved CE

* 30 contact hours of approved CE

Vermont State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.vtprofessionals.org/opr1/nurses

Phone: 802-828-2396

Renewal requirements: One of the following (the renewal period is 2 years):

* 960 practice hours within the past 5 years

* 400 practice hours within the past 2 years

* reentry program within the past 5 years

Virginia Board of Nursing

Web site: http://www.dhp.state.va.us/nursing/default.htm

Phone: 804-662-9909

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission

Web site: https://fortress.wa.gov/doh/hpqa1/hpS6/nursing/default.htm

Phone: 360-236-4700

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 1 year.

West Virginia Board of Examiners for Registered Professional Nurses

Web site: http://www.wvrnboard.com

Phone: 304-558-3596

E-mail: rnboard@state.wv.us

Renewal requirements: 30 contact hours of approved CE activities or courses. If you've have been licensed recently, your CE requirement may be 12 contact hours or may be waived, depending on date of licensure. Renewal period is 1 year; report CE status every 2 years.

Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing

Web site: http://drl.wi.gov/index.htm

Phone: 608-266-2811

Renewal requirements: None. Renewal period is 2 years.

Wyoming State Board of Nursing

Web site: http://nursing.state.wy.us

Phone: 307-777-7601

Renewal requirements: One of the following (renewal period is 2 years):

* 500 practice hours within the past 2 years

* 1,600 practice hours within the past 5 years

* 20 CE units in the past 2 years

* refresher or reentry program in the past 5 years

© 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

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