State-by-State Nursing Licensure for COVID-19 (Updated)

With the public health emergency extending into April 2021, nursing licensure processes continue to vary by state and facility. We’ve compiled an overview of state-by-state licensure and procedures for StaffDNA’s top 27 states as of March 2021. We’ll continue to monitor and make updates as needed.

Arizona

Issuing temporary emergency licenses, but candidate must have a job offer to start within 7 days to apply. Takes approximately 48 hours.


Arkansas

Issuing temporary licenses within one week of applying.


California

Allowing out of state nurses with any active nursing license to work in California only if the facility approves. Regular temporary license takes 4 to 6 weeks.


Colorado

Issuing temporary licenses in approx. 30 days.


Florida

Regular license takes up to 30 days.


Georgia

Issuing regular licenses in 20 to 30 days.


Illinois

Offering a COVID emergency licenses. Regular temporary license takes approx. 4 weeks, but could be longer if there’s a hit on the license, background issue or the license is from a state that doesn’t use Nursys for verification.


Indiana

Offering emergency temp licenses currently valid through March 27, 2021, but it’s undetermined if the order will extend or not. Regular license takes 2 to 3 weeks if from a Nursys verification state. It can take up to 4 to 6 weeks if the license is from PA, CA or MI.


Kentucky

Issuing emergency temporary licenses. Need to download application and mail it to Kentucky Board of Nursing. Regular temporary license takes 2 to 3 weeks.


Louisiana

Offering both temporary licenses and walkthrough licenses. Temporary license takes approx. 2 weeks from the date all required information is submitted. Because of COVID-19, walkthrough licenses are only available by appointment only. Permanent license takes 4 to 8 weeks.


Maine

Issuing emergency temporary licenses. Need to complete online application and email it to the Main State Board of Nursing. Regularly temporary license takes 1 to 2 weeks from the date that all required documents are received.


Michigan

Issuing licenses in approx. 2 to 4 weeks.


Missouri

Issuing regular licenses in 1 to 2 weeks via mail. Offering very limited walkthrough licenses.


Nevada

Allowing out of state nurses to work with any active nursing license. Regular temporary license takes 1 to 2 weeks.


New Hampshire

Issuing emergency licenses processed within 24-48 hours. Regular license takes 4 to 6 weeks.


New Mexico

Allowing any state licenses to work in New Mexico. Regular license takes 7 to 14 days from the date the file is completed.


North Dakota

Allowing out of state nurses with any active nursing license to work in-state. Must apply for emergency license. Regular temporary license takes 7 to 10 days upon submitting all required information.


Oklahoma

Regular temporary license takes up to 7 days.


Oregon

Issuing regular licenses in 4 to 6 weeks.


South Carolina

Issuing regular temporary license in approx. 14 days. Must apply online. Not issuing emergency or walkthrough licenses.


South Dakota

Allowing out of state nurses with any active nursing license to work in-state until June 30, 2021 unless the emergency order is terminated before then. Regular temporary license takes 1 to 2 weeks.


Tennessee

Regular license takes 4 to 6 weeks. Not issuing emergency or temporary licenses.


Texas

Allowing out state nurses with active licenses to work in Texas until April 13, 2021, but undetermined if the ruling will be extended or not. Regular temporary license takes 10 to 15 days to process.


Virginia

Issuing emergency temporary licenses processed within 24-48 hours. Regular license takes 30 to 45 days.


Washington

Issuing temporary practice licenses in approx. 2 weeks from the date the file is completed with the exception of the fingerprint results. Once fingerprint results are received, a permanent license will be issued. Note: The most comment delays are from states that don’t use Nursys verification and sending official transcripts for nursing education.


Wisconsin

Not offering temporary licenses for endorsement applications. Regular licensing takes 12 to 14 weeks.


Wyoming

Takes 2 to 3 weeks for temporary license.


**Indian Health Service Facilities accept any active state license.

UPDATED JANUARY 2021