The Nursing License Compact (NLC) is an agreement that allows Registered Nurses (RN) and Licensed Practical Nurses to practice in states without the need for obtaining additional licenses. However, the states in question should be part of compact nursing states.
This agreement offers more freedom for nurses to pursue their career in any NLC states. As long as they have a license, they are allowed to work and reside in other compact states. Scroll through to learn more about NLC states and more.
What Are Nurse Compact States?
The Nursing Compact States are stating that are part of the NLC agreement. In 2015, there were 25 states that joined this agreement. As the members grow in number, enhanced NLC (eNLC) was implemented in 2018.
The eNLC is intended for Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses. Currently, the NCSBN is working on an agreement for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN). This compact agreement will be implemented only when 10 states or more enact the legislation.
Originally known as NLC, this compact agreement transforms into eNLC to streamline the process. Besides, it also brings improvement in the standard for multi-state nursing licensure. As the originally compact license was lacking, the new licensure standard is expected to increase the quality.
Among the new standard of licensure is that the NLC states didn’t require nurses to undergo federal and state fingerprint checks to scan their criminal backgrounds. But the new eNLC standard requires the applicants to undergo such a test.
List of Nursing Compact States
As of March 2021, there are 35 compact license states currently listed as eNLC members. This list has been enhanced from the original NLC. Among other members, New Jersey implements the compact partially as it completes the final phase of enhanced NLC implementation.
As many as 24 original compact nursing states have enacted the enhanced NLC. The other additional states are on pending legislation status and are waiting for approval for joining. Besides, Washington and California have pending legislation to join this compact agreement.
Here is a list of eNLC as of March 2021:
- New Jersey
- New Hampshire
- New Mexico
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
With 35 states joining the NLC, this means 15 other states don’t have legislation for the eNLC. Those states include Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, New York, Pennsylvania, Virgin Islands, Mariana Islands, and Minnesota.
Benefits of Being a Compact State Nurse
Being a nurse in any compact nursing states bring a number of benefits. Not only does it open a wider opportunity, but it also helps save a lot on budget and time. If you plan to be a part of the nursing compact, here are things you will get:
⦁ One License for Across State Line
The licensure compact enables you to practice across the state line without creating additional license. Only with a nursing license, you will be accepted in 35 states throughout the United States. Of course, it removes the complexities in pursuing your dream.
This is especially beneficial for travel nurses who often practice with patients across multiple states. They don’t necessarily need to apply and renew a nursing license as long as they have a compact nursing license.
⦁ Time- and Money-Efficient
Without the need for applying for a new nursing license, you can focus on your job with the patient. You don’t have to go back and forth and waste time queuing or completing documents. Once you hold compact licensure, you are ready to go across compact nursing states.
It is also basically money-efficient. While applying for a new license takes a lot of money, you can save a lot by making only a single license. Despite the licensure requirements it takes, this is an efficient way to obtain greater work access.
⦁ Wider Mobility
Being a part of compact nurse states allows you to obtain additional mobility. You can decide where to work with patients without worrying about a variety of license. With 35 nursing license compact states to choose from, you have a wider career opportunity awaits.
In short, compact nursing states offer greater access for nurses to promote their career. For the healthcare industry, this agreement helps increase the distribution of high-quality professionals because they are not constrained by a license.