Harrisburg, Pa. − June 16, 2022 − After hearing countless complaints and concerns from recent nursing school graduates attempting to get licensed in Pennsylvania, Senator Maria Collett, RN (D-12 Montgomery/Bucks) and Senator Lisa Boscola (D-18 Lehigh/Northampton) announced legislation to improve and streamline the process for future nurses. The bill would amend the Professional Nursing Law so the State Board of Nursing no longer needs to review and approve applications before students can take the board nurse licensure exam.
“With demand for health care workers continuing to outpace supply, we need to eliminate the bureaucratic barriers keeping nursing school graduates from joining the workforce. Our current nursing licensure process is creating unacceptable delays for graduates who are ready to take their exams and get to the bedside,” said Senator Collett. “As a nurse, I’ve experienced this waiting game firsthand. Pennsylvania has some of the best nursing programs in the country, and we need to make sure our Commonwealth remains an attractive place for new nurses to practice.”
Study after study from the Joint State Government Commission have outlined the dire need for recruiting and retaining high quality nurses and health professionals across the Commonwealth.
“The status quo is not working for our nursing students. I receive calls about it in my office almost every day,” said Senator Boscola. “Let’s insert some commonsense, by passing this bill to remove the redundancy of it all. Our nurses should be worrying less about the licensing process so they can get back to caring for the patients of this Commonwealth, at a time when we need them most.”
Nursing programs are already required to be accredited by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the administrators of these nursing programs provide the State Board of Nursing with appropriate documentation for nursing students who have successfully completed their coursework. The Board’s process of reviewing and verifying the completion of a state accredited program is redundant and unnecessary, and removing that step will free the state up to facilitate board exams and license processing in a timelier manner.
This is companion legislation to HB 2590, introduced by Representative Dawn Keefer.
Senator Collett: Bailey Landis, Bailey.Landis@pasenate.com, 215-688-0493
Senator Boscola: Meghan Lago, Meghan.Lago@pasenate.com, 610-868-8667