What Travel Nurses Need to Know About the Nurse Licensure Compact

Oct 15, 2019 | Travel Nursing

The Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), also commonly called the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC), added two states to the fam July 2019—Kansas and Louisiana. What do travel nurses need to know about the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact and what’s on the horizon?

You have more opportunities to practice across state lines under one license and additional expansions are on the horizon.

What is the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact?

The eNLC increases access to care while maintaining public protection at the state level.

It allows a nurse to have one multistate license with the ability to practice in the home state and other compact states.

 Source: NCSBR.org

How does a travel nurse become eligible for compact multistate license?

If you’re a nurse claiming primary residence in a noncompact state, you can still apply for a license by endorsement in a compact state, but your eligibility would be limited to a single-state license valid in that state only. Nurses residing primarily in a noncompact state can have as many single-state licenses as they’d like. 

Still curious about the ins and out of obtaining an eNLC license? Check out more FAQs

What states are looking to become part of the eNLC?

In addition to Kansas and Louisiana’s recent welcome, Alabama, Indiana and New Jersey are awaiting implementation.  

Massachusetts, Michigan and Pennsylvania are pending legislation. That leave 16 states outside of the eNLC to date, meaning travel nurses would need to obtain a single-state license to practice in California or New York, for example.

Is the eNLC a positive for healthcare professionals, facilities and patients?

This is a question with various aspects to consider. From a travel nurse and travel nurse recruitment perspective, it’s definitely streamlines placing quality caregivers in facilities in need of talented support.

Big-picture pros to celebrate:

  • Promotes ease of mobility
  • Provides workforce flexibility
  • Supports telehealth coverage

Overarching cons to consider:

  • Complicates licensure and disciplinary standards
  • Disjoints continuing education requirements

We’re of the mindset that the eNLC is a game-changing agreement for many travel nurses and healthcare facilities, and the cons associated with it continue to be part of conversations geared toward achieving and maintaining a high quality of patient care. 

As always, we make nurses and allied health professionals our top priority. Feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.