The state of Ohio is the 10th most densely populated in the U.S. Its capitol city, Columbus, has about 1.8 million residents. Ohio has experienced a growing nurse shortage in the past decade, and one of the biggest drivers of the deficit is the lack of enough educational opportunities for nurses. The Ohio Nurses Association reports that over 6,000 nurse student hopefuls were denied entry into nursing programs in the state because there just wasn’t enough space. The rapid development of new online nursing education options is just one of the strategies being used to combat the shortage of nurse practitioners in Ohio and across the U.S.
Any accredited nursing program, whether online or campus-based, can qualify a student nurse to apply for nursing licensure. The Ohio Board of Nursing handles all licensure applications for the state, and offers the following types of nursing licenses:
- Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)
- Registered Nurse (RN)
- Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN), including Nurse Practitioners
- Advanced Practice Registered Nurse with Prescriptive Authority (APRN-Rx)
Nursing Licensure in Ohio
Since Ohio is not a member of the Nurse Licensure Compact, nurses wishing to practice in the state must apply for a new license, even if they have already been licensed elsewhere. The steps to apply for a nurse license in Ohio are outlined below, and more comprehensive instructions can be found at the Ohio Nursing Board’s website.
- Complete the National Council Licensure Examination for RNs (NCLEX-RN), administered by the National Council of state boards of nursing (NCSBN). This may require a $200 fee.
- Submit all required paperwork, including transcripts from nursing college or training program and any previous licenses you have held.
- Submit to a criminal background check. The state of Ohio refuses to license anyone who has been convicted of certain violent crimes, though having a criminal record does not necessarily exclude an applicant.
- Renew your license every two years using the application instructions available on the nursing board website.
- Fulfill continuing education requirements every two years, and submit proof of this along with your renewal application. Nurse applying for renewal in Ohio must complete 24 contact hours of CE [PDF] every two years to qualify.
Average Nursing Salaries in Ohio
All salary data is as of May 2011.
The mean annual wage for nurses in Ohio is $61,710, though there are certain metropolitan areas with significantly better salary possibilities for nurses.
The table below compares the mean annual salaries for RNs in Ohio against those in the metropolitan areas of the state, and against the U.S. as a whole. All data has been provided by The Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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