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Advanced Practice Licensure

General Information

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Oregon licenses three types of Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN): Nurse Practitioner (NP), Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA), and Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS). In order to hold an APRN certification in Oregon, all nurses must also apply for and maintain an Oregon Registered Nurse (RN) license. The nurse is issued an RN license number and a separate APRN NP, CNS, or CRNA certification number; both will follow the same expiration lifecycle, as long as the nurse maintains both RN and APRN licensure through eligibility requirements during the renewal process. For more information regarding license expiration and renewal, see Initial Licensure Expiration & Renewal section below.

NPs are required to qualify for, obtain, and maintain Prescriptive Authority with their Oregon APRN certification per Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR). Both CRNAs and CNSs are eligible to apply for and obtain prescriptive authority by meeting additional requirements; however it is not required for initial certification. For specific requirements regarding prescriptive authority, see the corresponding section within the Initial Eligibility section.

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APRN Eligibility: Nurse Practitioner

Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) regarding NPs are located within Division 50 of the Oregon Nurse Practice Act, and are available online at: http://arcweb.sos.state.or.us/pages/rules/oars_800/oar_851/851_050.html

The following NP specialties are recognized in Oregon:

Acute Care (ACNP)​ ​Family (FNP) ​Pediatric-Acute Care   (PNP-AC) Women’s Health Care (WHCNP)​
​Adult-Gerontology Acute Care (AGACNP) ​Geriatric (GNP) ​Pediatric-Primary Care (PNP-PC)
Adult-Gerontology Primary Care (AGPCNP)​ ​Neonatal (NNP) ​Pediatric (PNP)
Adult (ANP)​ ​Nurse Midwife (NMNP) ​Psychiatric/Mental Health (PMHNP)
 
  • Applicants must complete and submit application forms LIC-203 and LIC-204 with appropriate fees.
  • Proof of valid, unencumbered national certification from an accredited national certifying body is required for NP certification in Oregon. The national certification must be congruent with the NP population focus for which you are applying for licensure per OAR 851-050-0002(1)(d).

Education:

Per OAR 851-050-0001 and -0002, all applicants for Nurse Practitioner certification in Oregon must show proof of qualifying education that made them eligible for licensure. All nursing program graduates after January 1, 1986 must hold a minimum of a Master’s Degree in Nursing from an accredited graduate-level nursing program recognized by the US Department of Education. The nurse practitioner program must be specific to the role and population focus of practice for which the application is submitted.

Qualifying APRN education program must include evidence of completion of graduate level stand-alone nursing courses in physical assessment, pathophysiology, and pharmacological content, as verified upon receipt of your official transcript. Per OAR 851-056-0006(6) integrated courses in pathophysiology and physical assessment completed prior to January 1, 1996, may be acceptable towards the requirement if content otherwise is equivalent.

Practice (Fulfill One of the Three Options Below):

  • Completion of the qualifying NP program within two years from date of application. Applicants must include proof of a minimum of 384 practice hours within an RN scope on their NP application. These hours cannot be part of a continuing education program or completed for an academic clinical requirement, per OAR 851-050-0004(2)(a); OR
  • Practice as an NP in the population focus for at least 192 hours within the past two years from date of application; OR
  • 960 hours of NP practice in population focus within the last five years from the date of application.

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APRN Eligibility: Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist

Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) regarding CRNAs are located within Division 52 of the Oregon Nurse Practice Act, and are available online at: http://arcweb.sos.state.or.us/pages/rules/oars_800/oar_851/851_052.html
  • Applicants must complete and submit Application forms LIC-205 and APRN Prescriptive Authority LIC-204 (if Prescriptive Authority is desired) with appropriate fees.
  • Proof of valid, unencumbered national certification from the National Board of Certification and Re-Certification for Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) is required for CRNA licensure in Oregon.
Education:
  • Per OAR 851-052-0020, all applicants for CRNA licensure in Oregon must show proof of qualifying education that made them eligible for licensure. All nursing program graduates after January 1, 2001 must hold a minimum of a Master’s Degree in Anesthesia practice from an accredited graduate-level nursing program recognized by the US Department of Education.
  • If you are applying for a CRNA license with prescriptive authority, your program must include evidence of completion of graduate level stand-alone nursing courses in physical assessment, pathophysiology, and pharmacological content, as verified upon receipt of your official transcript. Per OAR 851-056-0006(6) integrated courses in pathophysiology and physical assessment completed prior to January 1, 1996, may be acceptable towards the requirement if content otherwise is equivalent.
Practice  (Fulfill One of the Two Options Below):
  • Completion of the qualifying CRNA program within two years from date of application; OR
  • 850 hours of CRNA practice within the last two years from the date of application.
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APRN Eligibility: Clinical Nurse Specialist

Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) regarding CNSs are located within Division 54 of the Oregon Nurse Practice Act, and are available online at: http://arcweb.sos.state.or.us/pages/rules/oars_800/oar_851/851_054.html

Applicants must complete and submit Application forms LIC-206 and (if Prescriptive Authority is desired) APRN Prescriptive Authority LIC-204 with appropriate fees.

Education:

  • Per OAR 841-054-0040 all applicants for CNS licensure in Oregon must show proof of qualifying education that made the eligible for licensure. All applicants for CNS licensure must hold a graduate degree in Nursing, or a Post-Master’s Certificate with evidence of CNS theory and clinical concentration from an accredited graduate-level nursing program recognized by the US Department of Education.
  • The CNS program completed must be one year or more in length; and
  • Nursing program graduates after January 1, 2007 must have at least 500 hours of clinical practicum completed within their program.

Practice (Fulfill One of the Three Options Below):

  • Completion of the qualifying CNS program within two years from date of application; OR
  • Practice as a CNS for at least 192 hours within the past two years from date of application; OR
  • 960 hours of CNS practice within the last five years from the date of application.
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APRN Eligibility: Prescriptive Authority

Oregon Administrative Rules regarding Prescriptive Authority for all APRNs are located within Division 56 of the Oregon Nurse Practice Act, and are available online at: http://arcweb.sos.state.or.us/pages/rules/oars_800/oar_851/851_056.html

Independent Prescriptive Authority is available for all APRNs applying for licensure in Oregon, or they may add it to an existing Oregon APRN license, given they meet the requirement for privileges. Prescriptive Authority is required for all Nurse Practitioners in Oregon and is not optional. An applicant for initial Oregon NP licensure must qualify for, obtain, and maintain their prescriptive authority.  Prescriptive Authority is optional for CRNAs and CNSs.

Education:

Qualifying APRN education program must include evidence of completion of graduate level stand-alone nursing courses in physical assessment, pathophysiology, and pharmacological content, as verified upon receipt of your official transcript. Per OAR 851-056-0006(6) integrated courses in pathophysiology and physical assessment completed prior to January 1, 1996, may be acceptable towards the requirement if content otherwise is equivalent.

Practice (Fulfill One of the Two Options Below):

  • Graduation from a qualifying APRN education program within two years prior to application (practice requirement is waived); OR
  • Proof of at least 150 practice hours utilizing current prescriptive authority in another state, US jurisdiction, or US federal institution or facility in the last two years prior to receipt of application. This is required for applicants who are more than two years post-graduation from their qualifying APRN program.
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Initial Licensure Expiration and Renewal

Per Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 678.101, all individuals that apply for and are issued a license to practice nursing by the Oregon State Board of Nursing, are given an initial license period that is based on their birthdate and birth year, in relation to the date the license is issued. This means that based on your birthday and year, your initial license could be valid for a period from 90 days, up to 2 years and 89 days. Subsequent renewals will cycle every two years from that initial expiration date.

Always renew by the end-of-the-day before your birthday to ensure that your license remains active. For instance, if your birthday is March 18, OSBN must receive your renewal application and fee by the end of March 17. The two-year renewal cycle is based on birth years; if you were born in an even year (1964, 1970, 1982, etc.), you will renew in even years. If you were born in an odd year (1965, 1971, 1993, etc.), you will renew in odd years.

All Oregon licensees are eligible to renew their nursing license(s) 90 days prior to the expiration date. The Board sends courtesy renewal reminders to licensees via the email address on file. Failure to receive this courtesy notice, however, does not relieve licensees of their obligation to maintain a current license. It is the licensee’s responsibility to renew on time. It is important that licensees keep all contact information up-to-date with OSBN to ensure they receive applicable communication or notifications.
 
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APRN Renewal Requirements

The following is an overview of renewal requirements for all APRN licensees that hold Prescriptive Authority, and APRN nurses who do not hold prescriptive privileges, separated by APRN type. For more specific information regarding renewal requirements for prescriptive authority, please review Division 56 of the Oregon Nurse Practice Act, available online at:  http://arcweb.sos.state.or.us/pages/rules/oars_800/oar_851/851_056.html.

APRNs that have Prescriptive Authority are required to attest to meeting the following practice and continuing education requirements for renewal:

Practice:
Completion of at least 150 hours of practice utilizing current prescriptive authority within the scope identified in OAR 851-056-0004(1-2). Hours must be within the last two years from the date of license expiration. If the licensee is NOT able to meet the practice requirement, they must show proof of completion of an OSBN-approved APRN-level 45-hour pharmacology course completed within the past two years. The licensee is required to submit a copy of certificate(s) of completion for the pharmacology continuing education (CE) with their renewal application in order to satisfy the requirement.

Continuing Education:
An APRN who actively maintains unencumbered national certification for the type of Oregon license they are renewing (NP, CNS,or CRNA), will meet the continuing education renewal requirement. If the APRN does not hold active unencumbered national certification for the type of APRN licensure they hold in Oregon, they must attest to completion of at least 45 structured contact hours of CEs, with 15 of those hours focused in APRN-level pharmacotherapeutic content.
 
APRNs that DO NOT have Prescriptive Authority
  • CRNA: Show proof of current unencumbered national certification from the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA). Upon recertification, licensees must submit a copy of their updated certification to OSBN that indicates the new expiration date and their identification number. OSBN will update their records upon receipt.
  • CNS: Attest to completion of at least 40 contact hours of CEs in the two years prior to license expiration. 50% of those hours must be completed as a structured activity; valid CNS national certification may be used in lieu of completion of the 50% structured hours.
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Criminal Background Check

The OSBN conducts a national fingerprint-based criminal background check on every individual that applies for Oregon nursing licensure, in addition to reviewing nursing practice and discipline history.

NOTE: The background check requirement is not waived for individuals who have had a previous background check completed by another agency, state, or US jurisdiction. An active background check on file with OSBN is valid for a six month period. If you have had a background check completed by OSBN in the last six months prior to applying for APRN licensure, you will not be required to submit a second one. This is only for nurses who applied for and were issued an RN license in Oregon, and then subsequently submitted an application for APRN certification during the same six month period. Individuals who simultaneously apply for both RN and APRN licensure only need to provide one background check and processing fee. 

Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions about fingerprinting.

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