Nurse Practitioner Programs in Rhode Island: Facts & Figures

Rhode Island is the smallest state in the U.S., and as such has comparatively lower employment numbers for nurse practitioners than other states. However, relatively high salaries for nurses in the state make it an appealing destination despite its few metropolitan job markets.

The State of Rhode Island’s Department of Health handles all nursing licensure needs in the state. They provide all the standard nursing licenses, including:

  • Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA)
  • 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 Rhode Island

Rhode Island is a member of the Nurse Licensure Compact, so nurses with licenses from other Compact member-states may practice in Rhode Island without applying for a local license. Some restrictions may apply to the applicability of inter-state nurse licenses.

Additionally, in Rhode Island, nurses must complete the continuing education requirements to maintain their licenses even if they no longer practice. Not meeting these requirements will result in the lapse of the license, making it more difficult for the nurse to renew if he or she decides to start practicing again.

  1. Complete the National Council Licensure Examination for RNs (NCLEX-RN), administered by the National Council of state boards of nursing (NCSBN).
  2. Submit all required paperwork, including transcripts from nursing college or training program and any previous licenses you have held.
  3. Submit to a criminal background check.
  4. Renew your license every two years using the application instructions available on the Rhode Island state nursing board’s web page.
  5. Fulfill continuing education requirements every two years, and submit proof of this along with your renewal application. Rhode Island requires nurses renewing their license to complete 10 contact hours of continuing education every two years.

Average Nursing Salaries in Rhode Island

All salary data is as of May 2011.

Rhode Island’s nurse salaries are high compared to the rest of the U.S., but the relatively low population may make competition for RN jobs higher as well.

The table below compares the mean annual salaries for RNs in Rhode Island against those in the metropolitan areas of the state, and against the U.S. as a whole. Since Rhode Island is so small, geographically, it only has two metro areas, both of which are considered shared with other states. All data has been provided by The Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Area Registered Nurses Average Salary
United States 2,724,570 $69,110
Rhode Island 12,340 $72,720
Norwich-New London, CT-RI 2,270 $73,920
Providence-Fall River-Warwick, RI-MA 14,840 $71,830

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