Arkansas, like most other states in the United States, has had to take steps to combat the nursing shortage. In 2009, legislators approved bills that aimed to increase the number of nursing students in the state by increasing the amounts of college loans they were eligible for. They even passed a motion that the state Board of Nursing would cancel the amount of one year’s loan for each year a nursing graduate practiced in the state. These incentives aimed to not only increase the number of nursing students but also the number of practicing nurses in Arkansas as well.
Reports show that by 2015, an estimated 5,000 nursing positions will need to be filled, from registered nurses to advanced practice nurses, such as nurse practitioners. Currently, the Arkansas State Board of Nursing (ARSBN) offers professional nursing licenses for the following:
- Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)
- Registered Nurse (RN)
- Licensed Psychiatric Technician Nurse (LPTN)
- Advanced Practice Nurse (APN)
- Nurse Practitioner (NP)
Nursing Licensure in Arkansas
Licensing and certification requirements are mandated individually by each state and regulated by the Nursing Board of that state. Arkansas and the ARSBN will only license those who successfully complete all of the necessary requirements. To practice as a professional nurse in Arkansas, you must first:
- Successfully complete a state-approved nursing program
- Receive a passing grade on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX)
- Complete one of the following methods for continuing education:
- 15 contact hours of accredited practice-focused activities
- Hold a current nationally recognized certification
- Complete a minimum of one college credit hour course in nursing with a grade of C or better during licensure period
- Renew license every two years prior to the expiration date
Licenses for advanced practice nurses also vary by state. Your area of specialty will determine what requirements need to be met in order to maintain your eligibility.
Average Nurse Practitioner Salaries in Arkansas
All Salary Data is as of May 2013.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the average annual salary for nurse practitioners in Arkansas is $94,220, which is lower than the national average of $95,070. Occupational employment as well as wages vary greatly throughout Arkansas’s major metropolitan areas, all reporting lower salaries than the U.S. average.
|Area||Registered Nurses||Average Salary|
|Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway||9,330||$59,200|