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Steps to Becoming an APRN in Wyoming

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wyoming nursing

Get your Graduate-Level Education in Wyoming
Become Nationally Certified in Wyoming
Apply for your APRN Recognition in Wyoming
Renewing your APRN Recognition in Wyoming
Wyoming Job Statistics

  • 2015 mean salary for NPs in WY: $101,440
  • 2013 NCLEX-RN pass rate for Wyoming: 89.3%
  • 11,483 licensed RNs in WY in 2015
  • 693 licensed APRNs in WY in 2015
    • 524 NPs
    • 25 CNMs
    • 134 CNRAs
    • 10 CNSs
  • 2014-24 projected increase in NP job openings in WY: 36.9%
  • 2014-24 projected increase in RN job openings in WY: 19.5%

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing (WSBN) (phone: 307-777-7601, wsbn-info-licensing@wyo.gov) is responsible for granting APRN recognition to qualified advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) who practice in the state.

You must be licensed as an RN before you can apply for APRN recognition (and prescriptive authority).

The following steps describe the process for becoming recognized as an APRN in Wyoming.


Step 1. Get Your Graduate-Level Education

To be considered for APRN recognition, you must receive graduate level education in your clinical specialty through a nationally accredited graduate program.

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing does not recognize individual graduate programs; instead, it defers to national accreditation agencies to determine program viability. The master’s, doctoral, or post-graduate certificate program you choose must be accredited by a nursing-related accrediting organization recognized by the United States Department of Education (USDE) (check both Institutional and Specialized or Programmatic Accrediting Agencies) or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

Your graduate program should correspond to your clinical specialty. The Wyoming State Board of Nursing recognizes four clinical specialties for advanced practice nurses:

  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM)
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
  • Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner (CRNP)

Course Requirements

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing requires the following core courses (often called the three “P”s):

  • Pathophysiology (all general principles applicable across the human lifespan)
  • Advanced pharmacology (includes pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacotherapeutics of broad categories of agents)
  • Physical evaluation/assessment (includes assessment of all systems of the body, advanced assessment methods, techniques, and concepts)

Prescriptive Authority

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing may authorize you to prescribe medications and devices in accordance with all applicable state and federal laws, including the Wyoming Pharmacy Act, the Wyoming Controlled Substances Act of 1971, and the Federal Controlled Substances Act.

Prescriptive authority in Wyoming requires you to complete at least two semester credit hours, three quarter credit hours, or 30 contact hours of coursework in pharmacology and clinical management of drug therapy or pharmacotherapeutics within the five year period prior to applying.

Specialization

If you are a student interested in becoming a CRNP and CNS in Wyoming, you will be expected to pursue a graduate program within a specific population focus. The population foci within the CNRP and CNS specialties are:

  • Family/individual across lifespan
  • Adult-gerontology
  • Neonatal
  • Pediatrics
  • Women’s health/gender
  • Psychiatric – mental health

You can further specialize within the above population foci and choose to focus your practice in such areas as palliative care, nephrology, orthopedics, oncology, older adults, etc. so as to add to the level of care you’re able to offer your chosen population.


Step 2. Become Nationally Certified

Before you can become recognized as an APRN in Wyoming, you must become nationally certified in the APRN area you wish to practice.

Advanced Nursing Certification Categories

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing recognizes these APRN categories for national certification:

  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM)
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
  • Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner (CRNP)

Certification Programs

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing honors certification granted by any nationally recognized certifying body offering advanced practice nursing certification in practice area specialties, population foci, and APRN categories.

Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS):

Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM):

Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA):

Certified Nurse Practitioners (CRNP):


Step 3. Apply for APRN Recognition

By completing and signing the application for APRN recognition in Wyoming, you certify that you have not knowingly submitted false or misleading information to the Wyoming State Board of Nursing.

Complete your application in full by printing clearly with ink. Do not type. If you fail to complete the application in its entirety, it will be considered incomplete, and you will be contacted and informed of what is missing. The Board will hold your application for one year from the date received awaiting a complete submittal.

Complete the RN Licensure with APRN Recognition Application if any of the following applies:

  • You are currently licensed in another jurisdiction (APRN Recognition with Endorsement)
  • You are applying for re-licensure  (you were previously licensed in Wyoming)
  • You are applying for reactivation (you are currently on inactive status in Wyoming
  • You have a current RN license and you recently graduated from a nationally accredited APRN education program (APRN Recognition by Examination)
  • You are applying for a graduate temporary permit

Items to be included with your application:

  • A copy of your social security card and another document showing lawful presence in the US, which may include a driver’s license, birth certificate or passport
  • Proof of your current Wyoming RN license
  • Verification of your original state of licensure (as applicable)
  • An official transcript confirming the completion of your master’s degree in nursing within an APRN specialty area
  • Documentation for verification of national certification in a specialty area

Prescriptive Authority

Applying for prescriptive authority is optional in Wyoming, and eligibility is contingent on the completion of 30 contact hours of pharmacology and clinical management of drug therapy or pharmacotherapeutics. If you elect to pursue prescriptive authority, when it is granted your name will appear in the Wyoming State Board of Pharmacy database.

If you are applying for APRN recognition with prescriptive authority, complete the prescriptive authority section of the RN Licensure with APRN Recognition Application.

If you are already recognized an APRN and wish to add prescriptive authority, complete and submit the Application for Prescriptive Authority.

Background Check Requirements

When applying for RN licensure with APRN recognition, you must submit to the mandatory background check.

You must provide a self-inquiry report from the Healthcare Integrity and Protection Data Bank (HIPDB) website. The form must be completed, notarized and mailed back to HIPDB to the address on the top of the form.

Within three business days of submittal you can expect to receive notice via email that your report is complete and available for viewing. Once you receive the report, print it, write your password on it and send it to the Wyoming State Board of Nursing, along with your application for APRN recognition and fees.

Once the board receives your application and fees, you will receive fingerprint cards along with instructions for how to proceed with fingerprinting and processing. Your certificate of recognition of APRN status will not be issued until the Division of Criminal Investigation clears your background check.

Application Fees

  • Mandatory criminal background fee: $60.00
  • APRN Recognition (first recognition): $120.00
  • APRN Prescriptive Authority: $70.00
  • RN Endorsement or Re-licensure: $135.00 (as applicable)

Send your completed application(s), all required documentation to Wyoming State Board of Nursing, 1810 Pioneer Avenue, Cheyenne, WY 82002.

Graduate Temporary Permits

If you are still awaiting the results of your national certification examination, you may apply for a temporary permit, provided you have graduated from a nationally accredited nursing education program for advanced practice registered nurses. Your graduate temporary permit will be valid for no more than 90 days and is not renewable.

Apply for a graduate temporary permit using the RN Licensure with APRN Recognition Application and provide the following:

  • Official transcripts, which must be mailed directly from the Registrar’s Office
  • Proof that you applied for an APRN national certification examination for which you are eligible
  • A letter from a recognized APRN or licensed physician who has agreed to supervise your practice as a GAPRN. The letter must show that the APRN or physician understands the laws related to the graduate temporary permit and must show the equivalence between the APRN role and the supervisor’s role or specialty.
  • Completed self-inquiry report from the Healthcare Integrity and Protection Data Bank (HIPDB) website

Once you have been issued a temporary permit you will be allowed to use the title “Graduate Advanced Practice Registered Nurse” or the abbreviation GAPRN. Note: a GAPRN is only permitted to practice under the supervision of a recognized APRN or licensed physician.


Step 4. Renewing Your APRN Recognition

All Wyoming Registered Nurse Licenses with APRN Recognition expire December 31st of every even-numbered year (biannually).  Renewals take place between October 1st and December 31st. During this window, a link to an online renewal application will be available on the Wyoming State Board of Nursing Website.

You will be required to submit proof of your current national certification at the time of renewal.

Biannual Renewal Fees

Fees are due at the time of renewal, and can only be paid by credit card. Include a $5 credit card processing fee.

  • $110 for RN license
  • $70 for APRN recognition
  • $70 for prescriptive authority

Continuing Education and Practice Hours

The Wyoming State Board of Nursing does not stipulate any required continued education or practice hours for RN licenses with APRN recognition renewal if you’ve been recognized an APRN after July 1st 2005.

If you have been recognized by the State of Wyoming prior to July 1, 2005, and have maintained continuous recognition without a national certification, you must provide proof of 60 hours of continuing education related to a clinical specialty and 400 or more practice hours over the last two years.

If you have been granted prescriptive authority, you must submit a document verifying the completion of at least 15 hours of continuing education in pharmacology and the clinical management of drug therapy in the last two years.

Your national certification agency will likely require continuing education as a stipulation for re-certification. Contact your certifying body for details.

Expired/Inactive Certificate Renewal

If your license was allowed to expire, you’ll be expected to submit the RN Licensure with APRN Recognition Application again along with a re-licensure fee of $135.00, and all required documentation (see “Step 2”). You will also be required to resubmit to a background check.

Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Associations in Wyoming

Consider joining one of the professional associations that support the profession in your state:


Wyoming Nurse Practitioner Salary

Nurse practitioners in the Rocky Mountain region, including Wyoming, earned an average base salary of $97,567 and an average total income of $107,518, according to the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners’ 2011 National Compensation survey. Advance for NPs and PAs, a peer-reviewed journal, published a national salary survey in 2011 showing that, on average, Wyoming’s NPs saw a salary increase of nearly 6%, from $80,000 in 2010 to $84,416 in 2011. Nurse practitioners working in Cheyenne reported an average salary of $78,500 in 2011.

Registered Nurse Salary

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Casper WY
820
59410
Cheyenne WY
1080
63610
Northwestern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
770
52480
Southwestern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
690
57420
Northeastern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
780
60820
Southeastern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
640
56230

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

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Casper WY
70
88710
Cheyenne WY
90
70850
Northwestern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
110
76890
Southwestern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
90
69410
Northeastern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
70
74890
Southeastern Wyoming nonmetropolitan area
50
82920

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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