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Steps to Becoming an APRN in New Hampshire

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Get your Graduate Degree in New Hampshire
Earn your National Certification in New Hampshire
Apply for your License in New Hampshire
Renewing your License in New Hampshire

The New Hampshire Board of Nursing (phone: 603-271-2323, boardquestions@nursing.state.nh.us) oversees the licensing and regulation of nursing practice in New Hampshire, including advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) in the following categories:

  • Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM)
  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Adult Nurse Practitioner (ANP)
  • Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP)

To be approved to work as an APRN, you must have a valid, unencumbered New Hampshire RN license.

New Hampshire Statistics

  • 2015 mean salary for NPs in NH: $106,210
  • 2013 NCLEX-RN pass rate for New Hampshire: 83.2%
  • 26,000 licensed RNs in NH in 2015
  • 2195 licensed APRNs in NH in 2015:
    • 1741 NPs
    • 112 CNMs
    • 342 CRNAs
  • If you are a new graduate from a board-approved nursing program in the United States or Canada and the program meets the requirements set forth by the Board, you may apply using the Application for Licensing by Examination.
  • If you graduated from a nursing school outside of the United States or Canada and you can show evidence of the successful completion of the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing School examination (or a course-by-course credentials evaluation), you may apply using the Application for Licensing by Examination.
  • If you hold a current, unencumbered RN license in any jurisdiction (except a Compact state), you may apply using the Application for Licensing by Endorsement.*
  • If you graduated from a nursing program outside of the United States or Canada and you hold a current, unencumbered RN license in any foreign jurisdiction, you may apply using the Application for Licensing by Endorsement.
  • If you are a Canadian-educated nurse, you may apply using the Application for Canadian-Educated Nurse: Endorsement of Canadian License.
  • If you previously held a New Hampshire RN license, you must request a reinstatement application from the Board.

All paper license applications can be found on the Forms, Applications, Publications page of the Board’s website. You may also apply using the Board’s online licensing system.

*Nurse Licensure Compact

New Hampshire is part of the Nurse Licensure Compact. The Compact offers practice privileges for registered nurses in all compact states (Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin). If you are a resident of New Hampshire, and you hold an active New Hampshire nursing license, your license is considered a multi-state license, issued by the New Hampshire Board of Nursing. This allows you to practice in all Compact states without applying for additional licenses.


 

Step 1. Get Your Graduate Degree

To work toward APRN licensure in New Hampshire, you must successfully complete either a graduate or post-graduate degree from a nationally accredited nurse practitioner education program. Your educational program must contain at least:

  • 225 hours of theoretical nursing content
  • 480 hours of clinical nursing practice, including precepted experience and pharmacological interventions

If you earned a certificate from an APRN education program accredited by a national accrediting body before July 1, 2004, you are exempt from the graduate or post-graduate education requirement, although documentation from the director of the program is required to verify that you completed the integration of pharmacological intervention in your studies (applicable if a formal pharmacology course isn’t shown in your transcripts).

Practice and Contact Hour Requirements

In addition to holding a graduate or post-graduate degree and national certification, you must show evidence that you used advanced practice nursing knowledge, judgment, and skills for at least 400 hours within the four years prior to the submission of your APRN application.

If you graduated more than two years prior to applying for APRN licensure, you must show also evidence:

  • That you have completed at least 30 educational contact hours to satisfy the RN continuing competence requirements in the last two years
  • That you have completed an additional 30 addition hours—5 of which must be in pharmacology training appropriate to your specialty—in the last 2 years

Earning national certification will account for 30 of of the 60 required contact hours.


Step 2. Earn Your National Certification

After you complete your graduate education, you are then eligible to take an exam to become nationally certified in your advanced nursing general area of specialty category:

  • Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM)
  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Adult Nurse Practitioner (ANP)
  • Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP)

To receive an APRN license in New Hampshire, you must retain and maintain national certification denoting your specialty area of practice from one of the following organizations. Any APRN who practices without a current certification is considered to have an invalid APRN license and is therefore considered to be practicing without a license.

The Board only recognizes advanced practice areas of specialty and patient population foci that have been developed by a national credentialing or certifying body recognized by the National Council of State Board of Nursing and that have been pre-approved by the New Hampshire legislature.

The New Hampshire Board of Nursing recognizes the following certifying bodies and related areas of specialty/patient population foci for APRN Licensure:


Step 3. Apply for your License

To apply for APRN Licensure in New Hampshire, you must complete the Application for Initial Licensure application. The paper application can be found on the Forms, Applications, Publications page of the Board’s website. You may also apply using the Board’s online licensing system.

In addition to a completed application, you must submit the following information:

  • An official transcript, sent directly from your nurse practitioner education program, verifying the successful completion of an APRN program with evidence of 225 hours of theoretical nursing content, 480 hours of clinical nursing practice, including a precepted practicum, and pharmacological interventions
  • Copy of a current New Hampshire RN license, along with a Criminal Record Report (any nurse who has a current RN license will already have a Criminal Record Report on file with the Board)
  • A copy of your national certification or copy of your national certification, plus documentation of 30 educational hours (including 5 pharmacology hours) in the last two years and clinical experience of at least 400 hours within the last 4 years, if you graduated from an APRN program more than two years ago
  • A check or money order in the amount of $100, made payable to the Treasurer, State of New Hampshire

Mail the required fee, completed application, and all supporting documents to the State of New Hampshire, Board of Nursing, 21 South Fruit Street, Suite 16, Concord, NH 03301-2431.

Upon receipt of your APRN license, the Board will mail you information regarding your prescriptive privileges, including your DEA number.

If you do not complete the application for licensing process within 120 days of initiating it, it will be considered void.

Prescriptive Authority

Inclusive with all New Hampshire APRN licensing is the authority to possess, compound, prescribe, administer, dispense, and distribute controlled and non-controlled drugs to clients within the scope of the APRN practice.

Temporary License

If you are a new graduate who has successfully completed a graduate-level advanced practice nursing program and are awaiting the opportunity to sit for your first national certifying examination, you may apply for a one-time-only temporary license.

The paper application for Temporary APRN Licensure for New Graduates can be found on the Forms, Applications, Publications page on the Board’s website. You may also apply using the Board’s online licensing system.

Note: The Board must first accept your application for a permanent license before you can apply for a temporary license.Therefore, in addition to submitting an application for a temporary APRN license, you must have the following documents already on file with the Board:

  • A documented date to sit for your first scheduled national certifying examination specific to your specialty area
  • A current New Hampshire RN license, along with a Criminal Record Report (any nurse who has a current RN license will already have a Criminal Record Report on file with the Board)
  • An application for APRN licensure, along with the required $100 fee payable to the Treasurer, State of New Hampshire
  • An official transcript, sent directly from the nurse practitioner education program, verifying the successful completion of an APRN program with evidence of 225 hours of theoretical nursing content, 480 hours of clinical nursing practice, including a precepted practicum, and pharmacological interventions
  • A document showing supervised clinical practice by an APRN practicing in the same category (found at the end of the application)

You must also submit a check or money order in the amount of $20 payable to the Treasurer, State of New Hampshire.

Mail the required fee and completed application to the State of New Hampshire, Board of Nursing, 21 South Fruit Street, Suite 16, Concord, NH 03301-2431.

All temporary licenses will expire after 120 days or when you receive your APRN permanent license, whichever comes first. You may use the designation TARNP while practicing with your temporary license. Upon notification of your examination results by the national certifying agency, you must complete the APRN licensing process or suspend your practice and notify the Board within 15 business days.


Step 4. Renewing Your License

You must renew both your RN and APRN license every two years, before midnight on your birthday. When renewing your APRN application, you must also meet the continued competency requirements.

You can expect to receive a postcard notice about six weeks prior to the expiration date of your licenses.

The Board of Nursing encourages all nurses to renew their licenses online using the Board’s online licensing system. Instructions to access your code using the online licensing system are available on your renewal postcard. If you are unable to renew your license online, you must return the renewal postcard to the Board of Nursing, requesting a paper application.

Even if you have not received your postcard, you may review the list of licensees posted by the Board about one month before the expiration of your license. You may begin the online process if your name appears on this list (you will need to follow the directions found on the online renewal system to obtain a registration code).

Note: The Board of Nursing is no longer issuing paper copies of nursing licenses in New Hampshire. You may verify the issuance of your license or print a verification of your license through the Board’s online licensing system.

Renewal for an RN license is $100 and renewal for an APRN license is $100. You can pay by credit card through the online licensing system.

Continued Competency Requirements

All continuing competency requirements revolve around ongoing education and maintaining an “active in practice” status. APRN Continued Competency requirements are as follows:

  • Continuing Education Requirements: 30 hours for RN licensure and 30 additional hours for APRN licensure, 20 of which must be specific to the APRN specialty and 5 of which must be related to pharmacology. Current certification in your specialty will account for 30 continuing education hours.
  • Active in Practice Requirements: 400 hours active in practice specific to your specialty during each two-year renewal cycle.

Updating Contact Information

To notify the Board of a name or address change, complete the change of address and name forms found on the Forms, Applications, Publications page on the Board’s website. Once you have completed the appropriate form, you can either fax it back to the Board at 603-271-6605 or email your changes to the Board at boardquestions@nursing.state.nh.us. You may also mail the form to the Board at: New Hampshire Board of Nursing, 21 South Fruit Street, Suite 16, Concord, NH 03301.

Inactive Status

If you do not want to renew your license, you do not have to file for inactive status. Instead, your license will automatically become inactive at midnight on the birthday of your renewal year. The Board will keep your name on file, and if you want to reinstate your license at any time, you must meet the continuing competence requirements, including active in practice and continuing education requirements.

License Reinstatement

If you fail to renew your license before the expiration date, you may reinstate your license and pay a reinstatement fee, provided you meet the continuing competence requirements. If you have not met the continuing competency requirements, you must complete the re-entry process for APRNs.

To reinstate your APRN license, you must contact the Board at 603-271-2323 or send an email to boardquestions@nursing.state.nh.us to request a reinstatement application.

Re-Entry Requirements

As an APRN, you have a number of education re-entry options if you don’t meet the continued competency requirements:

  • Approved re-entry program under the specialty certification organization – There are a number of organizations that offer refresher APRN programs.
  • Approved re-entry program through a university – Some colleges and universities have APRN refresher programs in a number of nursing specialties.
  • New Hampshire of Nursing Re-Entry Program – This re-entry program is specifically designed for nurses who graduated from APRN programs more than two years ago or nurses who have not been “active in practice” in the APRN role for a minimum of 400 hours in the four years before applying for an APRN license.

Before you can begin the re-entry process for APRN licensure, you must hold an active, unencumbered New Hampshire RN license. If you have not been active in the RN role for a minimum of 400 hours in the four years preceding your application for licensure, an RN re-entry program must first be completed.

An application for the approval of an APRN re-entry program must be submitted to the Board and approved by the APRN Liaison Committee of the Board of Nursing before a re-entry program can begin.

Your application should include:

  • Your resume
  • A copy of your current certification in your APRN specialty
  • If you have never been licensed as an APRN in New Hampshire, you must include an official transcript from the APRN program from which you graduated, which must include evidence of 225 hours of theoretical nursing content, 480 hours of clinical nursing practice, including a precepted practicum, and pharmacological interventions
  • Details of your re-entry education plan, including the name of the program and the faculty overseeing the program
  • Details of your re-entry clinical practice plan, including the name of the assigned clinical preceptor and the copy of the preceptor’s license, the start and projected end dates of the experience, and details of the facility where the clinical program will occur
  • $100 paid in the form of a check or money order, made payable to: Treasurer, State of New Hampshire

Once the APRN Liaison Committee has approved your re-entry plan, you will have 18 months to complete the program. Once you have successfully completed the re-entry program, you must then submit the following documents to the APRN Liaison Committee:

  • Your completed application for APRN licensure
  • Letter from the educational institution attesting to the completion of the program detailed in your re-entry program application
  • If it is an initial license in New Hampshire, you must complete the Criminal Record Release Authorization Form, following directions received from the Board

Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Associations in New Hampshire

There are a number of elective membership organizations that offer continuing education opportunities and advocacy services to support APRNs in New Hampshire:


New Hampshire Nurse Practitioner Salary

The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners reported in their 2011 National NP Compensation Survey that nurse practitioners in the Mideast region, including New Hampshire, earned an average base salary of $94,337 and enjoyed an average total income of $101,112. In conducting their annual salary survey, Advance for NPs & PAs, a peer reviewed journal for NPs, showed nurse practitioners in Manchester earning an average of $83,900. NPs in Nashua enjoyed some of the highest salaries in the state, earning an average of $104,000 in 2011.

Registered Nurse Salary

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Haverhill-North Andover-Amesbury MA-NH NECTA Division
1580
66650
Lawrence-Methuen-Salem MA-NH NECTA Division
1920
78650
Lowell-Billerica-Chelmsford MA-NH NECTA Division
2360
71480
Manchester NH
2580
66710
Nashua NH-MA NECTA Division
1970
65250
Portsmouth NH-ME
890
62640
Rochester-Dover NH-ME
980
53140
Northern New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
830
54300
Other New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
2690
62390
Western New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
2210
68120
Southwestern New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
770
60280

Health Diagnosing and Treating Practitioners Salary

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Nashua NH-MA NECTA Division
40
69340

Nursing Instructors and Teachers Salary

Area name
Employment
Annual median wage
Manchester NH
40
70460
Nashua NH-MA NECTA Division
60
53270
Western New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
30
54360

Nurse Administrator Salary
(Includes Nurse Managers, Directors, and Chief Nursing Officers)

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Haverhill-North Andover-Amesbury MA-NH NECTA Division
140
98120
Lawrence-Methuen-Salem MA-NH NECTA Division
140
130650
Lowell-Billerica-Chelmsford MA-NH NECTA Division
270
103750
Manchester NH
320
96900
Nashua NH-MA NECTA Division
240
85840
Portsmouth NH-ME
80
92620
Rochester-Dover NH-ME
120
94040
Northern New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
90
85800
Other New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
170
94490
Western New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
320
111280
Southwestern New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area
70
94370

These tables provide salary and employment information compiled by the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics in May 2011. The data contained herein does not include self-employed nurses in independent practice.

When responding to the salary survey, some advanced practice registered nurses identified themselves as RNs while others identified themselves as health diagnosing and treating practitioners. When available, both sets of data were included for comparative purposes.

* These figures represent earnings that are at or above $90.00 per hour or $187,199 per year. The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not publish earnings beyond $90.00 hourly or $187,199 yearly.

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