difference between licensure and certification in nursing

Before a discussion of regulation can take place, it is important to understand the progress to date surrounding the Consensus Model and the Nursing Model Act and Rules for APRN licensure (NCSBN, 2011). 3, Manuscript 1. Most RNs work in healthcare facilities, but they can also apply their professional skills in home care settings, doctor’s offices, schools, private businesses, or government services. This is a relatively new graduate degree available to nurses who want to be at the highest level of their specialty. Here’s the rundown: ADN: an associate degree with a nursing concentration. • Certification is voluntary. However, certification is a concept that is frequently misunderstood by employers, the public, and even other nurses. Learn how your comment data is processed. Academic degrees can prepare you for nursing licensure or help you advance your career. The requirements for licensure define what is necessary for individuals to be able to practice the profession of nursing safely and ensure that each person meets those minimal requirements. The NCSBN was instrumental in developing the national licensure exam for RNs, which changed in 1982 to the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). That meant there was no consistency between states’ nurse licensure exams. All rights reserved. Your license will give firms, clients, and the public confidence in your skills and ability to properly protect their health, safety, and welfare. Certification is becoming the new standard measure for excellence in nursing care in this quickly changing healthcare system. To become certified you need additional experience, training, and successful completion of a certification exam. A certification, on the other hand, generally does not come from a public entity, but from a private one. Although these requirements may seem extensive, the responsibility associated with nursing licensure and safely caring for patients demands such consideration. Reach out to our friendly support for all your questions. Achieving certification usually involves at least 75 hours of training and successful completion of a competency exam. Certification, accreditation, and licensure are all professional development opportunities for students and health care workers who want to improve their knowledge and skills in the health care industry. The work involves caring for patients in settings such as hospitals, nursing care facilities, doctor’s offices, home health care, or in a private-duty capacity—all under supervision of a doctor or nurse. Unlike your license, your NCARB Certificate is granted by us, and serves as an official credential that demonstrates you’ve met national standards to practice—offering additional benefits that will help you advance your career. Simply stated, RN is an acronym for Registered Nurse, a certification earned to work as a Registered Nurse in a healthcare setting. There are three levels of occupational therapy careers in the United States: occupational therapist, occupational therapy assistant and occupational therapy aide. Requirements usually address the candidate’s RN licensure status, educational preparation, and number of clinical practice hours in the chosen specialty. All of these require a dissertation, and take about two or three years to complete. For example, the American Nurses Credentialing Center offers certifications in over 40 areas of nursing practice. Depending upon your license or certification, your scope of practice will differ. The Nursing Licensure Compact (NLC) allows nurses to have one license to practice in multiple states. Certification is a form of credentialing that demonstrates attainment of increased knowledge but does not address a legal scope of practice like licensure does. Licensure The major difference between the two involves the administering authority. A DNP focuses on clinical nursing practice and although it requires no dissertation, it does require a the completion of a scholarly project, and can take two or three years to complete. Certification is the acknowledgement or assurance that an individual has satisfied and completed the requirements to be competent in an activity or occupation. Certification is usually required with licensing as an NP, but new graduate NPs should check with their state's board of nursing for specific licensing requirements. People often confuse the two and use them interchangeably, which is a big mistake. A full-time class load takes about four years. Salary and job growth outlook. Licensure for Allied Health programs is NOT available in Washington State. , #1 in Nursing Careers Also called ASN (associate of science) or AAN (associate of arts), these are granted by community or junior colleges. How States Credential Practitioners Occupational therapists, or OTs, … To get certified or licensed, practitioners must meet specific education, training, or practice standards. Medical licensure indicates that a physician has met minimum requirements for the undifferentiated practice of medicine. Summary: When it comes to the world of nursing, the letters that follow your name can represent your academic degree, type of license, type of certification, or a combination of all. The terms nursing certificates and nursing certifications sound extremely similar, which causes a lot of confusion. Potential for confusion exists because regulatory agencies and professional associations may use the term certification differently with individuals and organizations. However, sometimes the certification becomes so important to job attainment that it … Registered nurse … View PhD Programs, EdD: Doctor of Education. The DNP may eventually be the required degree for nurses who want to enter advanced practice specialties. A magnet hospital is an organization or facility that exhibits nursing excellence through patient outcomes, communication, and delivery of care. After the approval, nurses can schedule an exam date through Iso-Quality Testing. The requirements for certification are diverse and depend upon the organization granting certification. View DNP Programs, PhD: doctor of philosophy. Therefore, APRNs today find that both the uniformity of standards and recognition of their advanced practice expertise lag behind those of their RN status (Evans, 2015). Currently, each state’s or territory’s BON or a designated entity grants licensure to RNs within that jurisdiction. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. State board approval simply means that the state has approved the operation of the program, and in most cases, graduates of that program can sit for licensure or certification exams in that particular state. (fed regulations allow direct reimbursement for some nursing services, yet state and local practices vary) Consensus model for APRN regulation, licensure, accreditation, certification, and education provides guidances for states to adopt uniformity in regulating APRN roles The term certification is sometimes used synonymously with the term accreditation. Licensure is technically a form of legal certification. MAN: a master of arts with a nursing focus. Historically, when an RN wanted to work in a state other than his or her home state, he/she had to apply for licensure in that other state. Nursing licensure originally came about to protect the public from unsafe nursing practice. 1994. what is the difference between licensure and certification? Nursing licensure is defined by the NCSBN as “the process by which BONs grant permission for an individual to engage in nursing practice after determining that the applicant has attained the competency necessary to perform a unique scope of practice”. However, the certification process for organizations is very different from individual or personal certification. This graduate degree prepares you for a specific career path in nursing, such as a nurse practitioner, anesthetist, clinical specialist, educator, or researcher. With a focus in nursing, this degree prepares nurses to conduct research … View Nurse Practitioner Degree Programs, Home | Program Directory | Articles | Methodology | Privacy Policy | School Program Listings. Only after all state requirements have been satisfied will a candidate be considered for licensure. First, licensure encompasses predetermination of the qualifications that are required to perform a defined scope of practice (e.g., LPN vs. RN) safely and an objective evaluation process to determine that the qualifications for the defined scope of practice are met. The American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN) defines certification as “a process by which a nongovernmental agency validates, based upon predetermined standards, an individual nurse’s qualifications for practice in a defined functional or clinical area of nursing”. Certification, like accreditation, is a voluntary process. It is also important to highlight the difference between national accreditation and approval by a state board of nursing. What’s the difference between board certification and being certified in a specialty? Licensure is a formal recognition by a regulation agency that someone is proficient in a skill to practice it in an area, often a state. The Difference Between Certificate Education and Specialty Certification Understanding the difference between nursing certificate education and becoming certified in a nursing specialty is important as you determine the course of study and practice necessary to achieve your career and employment objectives. To determine the exact requirements for certification, nurses should check with the specialty organization through which they wish to become certified. The state of North Carolina was the first state to enact a nurse practice act, in 1903. This degree prepares you to take the RN licensure exam and work as an RN. Commonly there is overlap, but sometimes there are distinct differences. Nursing home means a home used for the reception and care of individuals who by reason of illness or physical or mental impairment require skilled nursing care and of individuals who require personal care services but not skilled nursing care. In the past, there was no national licensure examination. This degree prepares nurses to conduct research, become professors in universities, or be high-level administrators or policy developers. Thanks to the elimination of state-specific licensure exams, nurses can be more mobile and more easily pursue career opportunities in multiple states. Governmental licensingis often confused with private credentialing, generally referred to as certification, because the meanings of the terms are frequently interchanged. Other entities provide voluntary accrediting services for community-based facilities. To ensure public protection, each state or territory in the United States through its state BON or designated licensure body requires a candidate for nursing licensure to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) or the NCLEX for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN) and meet other requirements before granting a nursing license. The two processes seem to be very similar, so it can be difficult to understand the differences. Master of Science in Nursing - Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, RN to BSN to Master of Science in Nursing. View MSN Programs. View BSN Programs. Required fields are marked *. Interview-Ready Nursing Jobs in the U.S.A. What does RN mean? Conversely, licensure must be issued by a government agency or entity. EdD: Doctor of Education. However, the use of APRN certification examinations as a basis for licensure has caused confuse among APRNs and APRN stakeholders regarding the difference between certification and licensure. Specialty certification provides positive benefits for patients, families, nurses, and employers. The work involves patient care under the supervision of nurses or doctors. States have been encouraged to adopt the ULRs to promote consistency across all U.S. jurisdictions. At the very heart of licensure are public safety and the need to ensure minimal competency in a set of nursing skills that a licensed nurse must possess in order to competently provide consistent quality nursing care for a defined level of nursing practice. what are the 2 duties of … This might include an association of nurses or … In 2011, the NCSBN Delegate Assembly adopted the Uniform Licensure Requirements (ULRs) to serve as standards for licensure for RNs and LPNs in all states and territories. Clinical Experience. Being licensed or certified is not always a guarantee of being qualified. With a focus in nursing, this degree prepares nurses to conduct research and become professors in universities. Simply passing the NCLEX-RN is no guarantee that an applicant will automatically be granted a nursing license. Occupational Therapy Licensure Vs. Certification. Certification is the granting of credentials that indicate a person has achieved a level of specialization higher than the minimal level of competency indicated by licensure. The FNP certification is a little different than a post-graduate certificate. To be certified or not depends on where you want to work—most nursing care facilities, for instance, require that you be certified to work there. For licensure or certification by the Board of Nursing, all criminal offenses are screened and reviewed prior to licensure or certification. Read on to learn more about what each degree, license, and certification means. Running a healthcare facility is far more complex than driving a car, and the various licensing and accreditation requirements are just one aspect of that c… The difference between licensure and certification seems very distinct in many healthcare roles. * An unrestricted (unencumbered) RN license, issued by a State Board of Nursing, means that a RN license must not have provisions or conditions that would limit the RN’s practice in any way., AND. In general, doctors, nurses or other healthcare career professions earn a license from a state or federal government. DNP: doctor of nursing practice. View Nursing Assistant Programs. Many states’ nurse practice acts also contain language that provides protection for the title of “registered nurse” to persons who hold a valid license and prevents other persons from using the title or credentials. Organizations such as hospitals or healthcare institutions can be certified by external/reviewing entities. Your email address will not be published. The American Association of Critical Care Nurses Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, Beacon Award of Excellence, and Magnet Recognition Program recognize certification as a critical component of nursing excellence in specialized practice. Over time, the practice of nursing has expanded, with regulatory focus on professional accountability. However, the definition did forbid nurses from diagnosing conditions or prescribing medications. The NCLEX examination measures the competencies needed to perform safely and effectively as a newly licensed, entry-level nurse. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. the NCLEX was replaced with computer testing in what year? The ULR provides for additional public protection by requiring disclosure of substance use disorders and prior actions taken or initiated against a professional or occupational license, registration, or certification. In essence, hospital accreditation provides a “gold seal of approval” for hospitals achieving those standards. In some states, LPNs can administer prescription medications, start IVs, and care for ventilator-dependent patients. Although some very specific forms of certification carry a legal status, most certifications only imply a specialized skill or knowledge set associated with specific professional status. A license is a state’s grant of legal authority to practice a profession within a designated scope of practice. A nursing home is licensed to provide personal care services and skilled nursing care. Licensure and certification, however, differ in terms of legal status. A BSN prepares you to take the RN licensure exam, enables you to work in many professional roles and settings, and acts as a springboard to a graduate education. In place of PhDs, some schools offer DNS or DNSc (doctor of nursing science) degrees, which have a similar research-focused program. Available: www.nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/ANAMarketplace/ANAPeriodicals/OJIN/TableofContents/… Medical licensure and Board Certification mean very different things for physicians practicing in the United States and the patients for whom they care. CNA: Certified Nursing Assistant. Define and discuss the differences between licensure, certification, and accreditation as they relate to health care facilities. By 1923, all states had enacted nurse practice acts. Each has different educational requirements. Also called nursing aides, you can prepare for this role at some high schools, vocational schools, and community or junior colleges. This is because RNs … As technology advances and the number of nursing specialty areas continue to grow, nurses are pursuing certification to increase their knowledge and skill beyond what they learned in their basic nursing programs. Licensure is the legal right and responsibility to engage in an activity or occupation. However, licensure and certification are two different terms that carry different meanings both professionally and legally. Consensus Model for Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification, and Education. RN acronyms with a “C” such as CCRN (critical care RN), CRNA (certified registered nurse anesthetist), CRNP (certified registered nurse practitioner) or RN-C indicate certification in a particular specialty. Some states have additional requirements. Requirements for licensure can vary from state to state but usually include successful completion of an approved nursing education program and the NCLEX-RN. One example of this type of title protection can be found in Arizona’s Nurse Practice Act. Though they might sound similar and do, in fact, share a lot of commonalities, it is important to draw a clear distinction between them. The passing level for the exam is set to ensure that at a minimum, a sufficient skill set is demonstrated to protect the public. Now take that a step further, and imagine you also need to license and insure any passenger who rides with you. Although some jurisdictions use the term certification as signifying governmental authority to practice a profession, the difference between licensure and certification is essentially the difference between governmental regulation and self … View ADN Programs, BSN: a bachelor of science with a nursing concentration. For instance, the distinction between RN licensure examinations and RN certification examinations is clear. Licensure refers to the demonstration of ability or knowledge required by law before being allowed to perform a task or job. MSN: a master of science with a nursing focus. Get an awesome nursing career ahead! A full-time credit load takes about two years to complete. Brilliant Nurse® is a career platform & bridge for all nurses and allied healthcare folks. This computer-based exam consists of 250 multiple-choice questions covering ethical and legal issues, epidemiology and prevention, pathophysiology, and psychosocial issues. Citation: Barnum, B., (August 13, 1997). Therefore, APRNs continue to face many of the challenges and barriers to practicing in different states that RNs faced prior to adoption of the NLC. The terminology is determined by the licensing state—Texas and California, for instance, use LVN whereas most other states use LPN. Differences Between Licensure and Certification. One of the most frequently asked questions we get from organizations, is what the differences are between these three entities: accrediting bodies, licensing authorities, and certification organizations. 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