Nurse Licensure Compact

The Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) is an agreement that allows “mutual recognition” of a nursing license between member states. Under the NLC, member states allow a nurse that resides in and possesses a current Compact nursing license to practice in any of the other member states without obtaining additional licensure in that state. It applies to both registered and practical nurses and is also referred to as a multi-state license.

What’s New

IL Senate Bill 3067 was introduced in Feb. 2020. AMITA Health supports this bill, which would allow for the issuance of multi-state licenses for nurses to practice in Illinois and other compact states.

What is the Issue?

33 States have implemented the Nurse Licensure Compact, including several of Illinois’ neighboring states. The Nurse Licensure Compact increases access to care while maintaining public protection at the state level.

Why does it matter?

Workforce capacity has emerged as an important issue during the current public health emergency and a critical gap in our preparedness.

In response to COVID-19, almost all states have taken at least some steps to address delays in licensure by waiving licensure applications, creating temporary licenses for licensed out-of-state practitioners, retired practitioners and inactive licensees. These actions enabled healthcare providers to be more nimble in responding to COVID-19 patients and maintaining care for non-COVID patients.

The experience related to health care professional licensure issues during the COVID-19 pandemic has made clear that actions need to be taken so that the nation is better prepared to quickly address the urgent health care workforce needs that arise in an emergency.


What is AMITA Health’s perspective?

  • AMITA Health is committed to a vibrant workforce to deliver personalized compassionate care to every patient in every setting. The NLC will allow for a more expedited path for licensure for nurses when there is a need to scale up care quickly.
  • We are dedicated to ensuring our nursing workforce has work-life balance.  When we lose a member of the team, being able to recruit a replacement becomes critically important to maintaining the work-life balance of the entire care giving team. Participating in the compact would allow us to more easily recruit.
  • For nurses who live in one state and work in another or for those who wish to be licensed in multiple states the NLC provides an opportunity to reduce fees paid and length of time spent obtaining multiple licenses.