Tracking Progress: A State-by-State Look at Pending Nurse Licensure Compact Legislation
Many states are proposing Nurse Licensure Compact legislation to increase the pool of available nurses for hire due to the growing demand for nursing professionals in the healthcare industry. Currently, several states have pending legislation to join the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), according to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN).
Governor Hochul proposed legislation for New York to join both the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact and the Nurse Licensure Compact. The state currently has pending legislation for this. The proposal was referred to New York’s Higher Education Committee in July of 2022 and Bill A10559 is still currently in the Assembly.
Rhode Island presents an intriguing situation. The state was in the original NLC but didn’t join the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact. This requires nurses with Rhode Island licenses to obtain a new nursing license if they wish to work in compact states.
The state has proposed two bills, House Bill 7268 and Senate Bill 163. The House has tasked a commission with reviewing nursing employment data and practice regulations for HB 7268. It is due to report by April 13, 2023.
After Governor Gretchen Whitmer vetoed House Bill 4046 in Michigan, the legislature proposed another bill. Currently, the House Ways and Means Committee is reviewing the NLC legislation, which has progressed from its committee stage. If the review is positive, it will then proceed to the floor of Michigan’s House of Representatives for voting.
Alaska proposed bills to its House of Representatives and Senate to join the NLC, but the committee has referred these bills without scheduling any public hearings yet. However, this move by Alaska could potentially pave the way for travel nurses to practice in some of the most remote and breathtaking regions of the country.
In March 2022, the Senate approved Minnesota’s membership in the Nurse Licensure Compact, but legislation is still pending.
Pennsylvania signed the NLC into law on July 1, 2021, but the date of implementation is yet to be determined. Until then, nurses with multi-state licenses are not allowed to practice in the state, and nurses residing in Pennsylvania cannot apply for a multi-state license.
Ohio signed the NLC into law on July 1, 2021, and the implementation began on January 1, 2023. This means that nurses from other compact states will be able to work in Ohio, and Ohio nurses may apply for a multi-state license.
Keep an eye out later in the year to see how these bills progress and if they will be put to a vote by their respective legislatures.