According to the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), “Modern health care delivery requires that nursing care, today and in the future, be dynamic and fluid across state boundaries. However, the 100-year-old model of nurse licensure is not flexible, adaptable nor nimble enough to best meet this need. The solution is the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) which increases access to care while maintaining public protection at the state level. Under the NLC, nurses are able to provide care to patients located across the country, without having to obtain additional licenses.”
The Nurse Licensure Compact allows for nurses to have one multistate license with the ability to practice in all compact states. This is especially applicable for Occupational Health Nurses providing case management and services to multi-state companies or consulting across state lines. Twenty-five states participating in the NLC included: Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
The Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC)
Licensing standards are aligned across eNLC states so all applicants for a multistate license are required to meet the same standards, which include federal and state fingerprint-based criminal background checks.
The original NLC states ae currently enacting state legislation enabling them to transition into the eNLC. New states, not previously members of the original NLC, are also enacting state legislation to become members of the eNLC. The 26 eNLC states include the following: Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming. The original NLC will remain in effect with Colorado, New Mexico, Rhode Island and Wisconsin as members until each enacts eNLC legislation.
In NLC states that have also enacted the eNLC, a nurse that holds a multistate license on the effective date of the eNLC will be grandfathered. However, if the grandfathered nurse wants to practice in a state that did not enact the eNLC, the nurse must apply for single-state licenses in each of those states. Check the status with your own State Boards of Nursing.
On January 19, 2018, eNLC states will implement and prepare to issue multistate licenses. Additional information about the eNLC can be found at www.nursecompact.com.