August 16, 2005 06:00 ET

NCSBN Welcomes New Hampshire to the Nurse Licensure Compact

CHICAGO, IL -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 16, 2005 -- The National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) is pleased to announce that New Hampshire recently passed legislation to join the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). The state will begin the rule-writing process to work toward implementation of the NLC in 2006.

Margaret Walker, MBA, BSN, RN, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Board of Nursing, comments, "New Hampshire looks forward to an association with other members of the NLC. The ready access of nurses across state lines will assist our Board's mission to respond to state emergency care needs and allow nurses greater work flexibility."

Currently, 19 other states have enacted the legislation allowing for participation in the NLC. Other states in the NLC currently include: Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Jersey (still to be implemented), New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin.

NCSBN developed the NLC with its member boards in 1997. Under the NLC nurses hold a license in their state of residency and are able to practice in another NLC state, provided that they follow the laws and regulations in the state of their current practice (similar to the drivers license compact). All NLC states participate in a coordinated licensure database called Nursys®, that aids the NLC in the advancement of its objective to enhance public protection.

The goal of mutual recognition is to simplify government processes and remove regulatory barriers in order to increase access to safe nursing care. This regulatory initiative responds to the rapidly evolving health care environment by addressing new practice modalities and technology (e.g. telenursing) for nurses who practice across state lines in a variety of health care settings.

"The NLC provides an extremely valuable service in today's constantly changing health care delivery system," comments Kathy Apple, MS, RN, NCSBN Executive Director, "The streamlined process in the mutual recognition model allows nurses greater mobility without ever compromising public safety or welfare."

Operationally the NLC is managed by The Nurse Licensure Compact Administrators (NLCA) who function as a separate, incorporated body made up of the participating state-designated NLC administrators. NCSBN serves as the secretariat for the NLCA.

The National Council of State Boards of Nursing, Inc. (NCSBN) is a not-for-profit organization whose membership comprises the boards of nursing in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five United States territories -- American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

Mission: The National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN), composed of Member Boards, provides leadership to advance regulatory excellence for public protection.

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