Iowa Nursing Certification and Licensing
Nursing Licensing in Iowa
Nurses in Iowa can expect a surge in job growth as the Baby Boomer generation ages. Many are now entering nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and need more access to medical care. Nurses provide the bulk of patient relations in any healthcare facility and will be the first line of defense in any healthcare situation. Doctors may provide the 'brain' of medical care, but nurses are the heart and backbone of any healthcare facility. Nurses distribute medication, give emotional support, and perform medical treatments. Advanced nurses may act in a similar capacity as physicians--prescribing medication and diagnostic tests. In Iowa you may study to become an LPN or RN to begin your career. The 'basic' nurse is an LPN (licensed practical nurse). These nurses usually work under the direction of an RN (registered nurse). Registered nurses perform supervisory roles in healthcare facilities and are the first 'stop' in an education towards an advanced nursing degree of Nurse practitioner and beyond.
Online Nursing Courses for Iowa Residents
Online classes are allowed, in Iowa, for continuing education and certain prerequisites if the online learning is provided by an accredited university.
Iowa Nursing Schools
All potential nursing candidates must complete an approved nursing program. These programs begin at one year for LPN and two year for an Associate's degree RN. Once the classes have been completed, you must apply for testing approval. You will pay an application fee at this time, then will be notified of your approval for testing. At the time of testing you must pay a testing fee (unless you have qualified for a scholarship or an employer pays for your testing). All licenses are issued after testing if you have gained a passing score.
Iowa Licensing Requirements
Iowa is one of twenty-one states that participate in the National Licensure Compact. This compact allows nurses in participating states to drive across state lines and work without taking another test or paying fees for another license in a different state. Nurses moving from a compact state must still apply for a new multi-state license if they move into another compact state, but will not need to retake the NCLEX. Every two years a nurse must renew their license. The fees vary based on LPN,RN or advanced degree. If transferring from another state, you will need to pay for license fees, but no other fees are applicable until renewal. A lapse in active status may require retaking the NCLEX if the state's board of nursing orders it.