New Jersey Implements Nurse License Compact
On Nov. 15, 2021, New Jersey completed the process of implementing the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC).
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CHICAGO – On Nov. 15, 2021, New Jersey completed the process of implementing the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). The NLC allows registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical/vocational nurses (LPN/VNs), whose primary state of residence is in an NLC state, to hold one multistate license, with the authority to practice in person or via telehealth, in both their home state and other NLC states.
In March 2020, the New Jersey Board of Nursing partially implemented the NLC. As a result, nurses who resided in other compact states and held an active multistate license in their state of residence were able to practice in New Jersey.
As of Nov. 15, 2021, the NLC is now fully implemented in New Jersey. Full implementation will allow nurses whose primary state of residence is New Jersey to apply for a multistate (compact) license.
“Through implementation of the NLC, regulatory burdens for RNs and LPN/VNs will be significantly reduced. Having the ability to obtain a multistate license will increase access to care for patients in New Jersey and other states,” comments Sean P. Neafsey, acting director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs.
Key points for nurses residing in New Jersey:
- The NLC became fully operational in New Jersey on Nov. 15, 2021. Nurses who currently hold a New Jersey RN or LPN license may apply to “upgrade” their existing New Jersey single-state license to a multistate license.
- The conversion application became available on the New Jersey Board of Nursing website starting Nov. 15.
- It is not necessary for New Jersey license holders to wait until their renewal period in order to apply for the multistate license.
- New graduates of nursing programs who are New Jersey residents may apply for licensure by exam from the New Jersey Board of Nursing and can choose to pursue a multistate license.
- Once a nurse is issued a multistate license, the nurse may stop renewing any license held in another NLC state.
Licensure requirements are aligned in NLC states, so all nurses applying for a multistate license are required to meet those same standards, including submission to a federal and state fingerprint-based criminal background check.
With the multistate license, nurses are able to provide telehealth nursing services to patients located in NLC states without having to obtain additional licenses. A multistate license facilitates cross-border practice for many types of nurses who routinely practice with patients in other states, including primary care nurses, case managers, transport nurses, school and hospice nurses and many others. Further, military spouses who experience moves every few years also benefit greatly from the multistate license.
About the Interstate Commission of Nurse Licensure Compact Administrators (ICNLCA)
The ICNLCA facilitates cross border nursing practice through the implementation of the nationally recognized, multistate license, the NLC. The ICNLCA enhances nurse mobility and public protection through maintaining uniform licensure standards among party state boards of nursing; promoting cooperation and collaboration between party states, facilitating the exchange of data and information between party states; and educating stakeholders. The ICNLCA is a quasi-governmental and joint public agency of the party states created and established on July 20, 2017. The Executive Committee is the seven-member elected leadership of the ICNLCA.
About the NLC
The NLC allows for registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical/vocational nurses (LPN/VNs) to have one multistate license, with the ability to practice in person or via telehealth in both their home state and other NLC states. There are 38 jurisdictions that are members of the NLC. Licensing standards are aligned in NLC states, so all nurses applying for a multistate license are required to meet the same standards, which include a federal and state criminal background check that will be conducted for all applicants for multistate licensure.
The NLC also enables nurses to provide telehealth nursing services to patients located across the country without having to obtain additional licenses. In the event of a disaster, nurses from multiple states can easily respond to supply vital services. Additionally, almost every nurse, including primary care nurses, case managers, transport nurses, school and hospice nurses, among many others, needs to routinely cross state boundaries to provide the public with access to nursing services, and a multistate license facilitates this process.