If you are a registered nurse (or are thinking of becoming one) read on to find the information you need, from licensing info, continuing education requirements, job & salary outlook, top hospitals, and nursing associations. Let us help you find your dream job!
In this article, we will cover:
- Licensing information
- Steps for renewing an Oregon nursing license
- Continuing education requirements
- Job & salary outlook for nurses in Oregon
- Top hospitals in Oregon
- Nursing organizations & associations in Oregon
- Basic steps for licensing and certification
- Contact information
Below are the fees for becoming a nurse in Oregon whether you are a first-time nurse or are moving to Oregon from another state. For more information visit the Oregon licensing page.
Licensing fees by examination (first-time nurses):
- NCLEX fee: $200
- Application fees: $169 (RN/LPN)
Licensing fees by endorsement (already have RN licensure):
- Application fees: $195 (RN/LPN)
License renewal fees:
- Application fees: $154 (RN/LPN)
*Fees are subject to change.
**Most states require a background check, but prices are not always listed.
Steps for renewing an Oregon nursing license
- Verify the status of your license
Visit the Verification page to confirm your license.
- Complete your Oregon nursing continuing education requirements before your license expires
You can complete your nursing CEUs online, on your schedule, and 100% free with Incredible Health.
- Go to the Oregon Board of Nursing to enter your renewal application
Continuing education requirements
- One-time requirement to complete 7 hours of Pain Management CE in order to renew a license
- The Oregon Pain Management Commission requires that 1 of these hours be fulfilled with their Pain Management module
Also, for renewal of licensure, the applicant must submit a fully completed application established by the Board and attest to one of the following:
(1)(a) 400 hours of nursing practice, at the level of the license sought, within the two years immediately preceding renewal application. Applicants initially licensed prior to January 1, 2021, must attest to having 400 hours of practice in the previous two years by their second renewal cycle after implementation of these rules. Prior to this second renewal, the applicant may use the previously required competency hours of 960 in 5 years; or
(b) Graduation from a Board-approved Oregon, or out of state school of nursing, or international nursing program within the two years immediately preceding renewal
(c) Completing a re-entry program
An APRN may renew their license to practice if:
(1) The APRN has also renewed their license as a registered nurse. Hours practiced as an APRN count towards RN license renewal, however, practice hours at the RN level do not count for APRN renewal. RN and APRN license renewals may be done simultaneously
(2) The APRN has one of the following qualifications:
(a) Has practiced 400 hours at the APRN level in the two years preceding the receipt of a completed renewal application. APRNs initially licensed prior to January 1, 2021, must attest to having 400 hours of practice in the previous two years by their second renewal cycle after implementation of these rules. Prior to this second renewal, the applicant may use the previously required competency hours of 960 in five years; or
(b) Is within two years of graduation of initial APRN education program, or
(c) Is within two years of completion of a Board-approved re-entry program, or
(d) Is within two years of completion a post-master’s certificate in the specialty being renewed; or
(e) Has maintained active national certification
Job and salary outlook for nurses in Oregon
Due to the shortage of nurses, these healthcare professionals are in high demand. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics estimates the profession will grow by about 9% between 2020-2030. The annual mean wage is $96,230.
We can also help you check out salary estimates to help determine if Oregon is the right state for you.
[ MORE: Average nurse salary in Oregon ]
Top hospitals in Oregon
If you’re not already picking up the phone to call movers, maybe this list of the best hospitals in Oregon will sway you in the right direction. Here are the top hospitals according to U.S. News and World Report:
- Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) Hospital – Portland, OR: This teaching hospital is a member of the Magnet Recognition Program® and is nationally ranked in six adult specialties and five pediatric specialties and rated high performing in three adult specialties and 16 procedures and conditions. Some of these specialties include:
- Ear, Nose & Throat (#15 in the nation)
- Gastroenterology & GI Surgery (#23 in the nation)
- Neurology & Neurosurgery (#29 in the nation)
- Geriatrics (#32 in the nation)
- Providence St. Vincent Medical Center – Portland, OR: This hospital is a member of the Magnet Recognition Program® and is rated high performing in four adult specialties and 16 procedures and conditions. Some of these include:
- Neurology & Neurosurgery
- Pulmonology & Lung Surgery
- St. Charles Medical Center – Bend, OR: This hospital is rated high performing in 15 adult procedures and conditions. Some of these specialties include:
- Procedures and Conditions Related to Cancer
- Procedures and Conditions Related to Cardiology & Heart Surgery
- Back Surgery (Spinal Fusion)
*Magnet status – Awarded by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and is considered the “gold standard” for excellence in nursing practice and care. Hospitals must meet certain criteria and apply to be designated.
Nursing organizations and associations in Oregon
Once you become a registered nurse (or even if you’re in the process), joining a nursing organization or association will give you access to networking, job opportunities, and a wealth of information shared between fellow nurses. Here are a few of the organizations and associations for nurses in Oregon:
Oregon Nurses Association – “We advocate for patients, nursing practice and nurses while assuring compassion, respect and dignity throughout Oregon’s health care systems.”
Alliance of Black Nurses Association of Oregon – This mission of this association is “to represent and provide a forum for Black nurses to advocate and implement strategies to ensure access to the highest quality of healthcare for persons of color.”
American Psychiatric Nurses Association Oregon Chapter – “The purpose of the Oregon Chapter of APNA is to unite, support and educate all levels of psychiatric nurses in rural and urban Oregon while promoting and advocating for excellence in mental health care and recovery.”
Check out the comprehensive list of national organizations as well.
Basic steps for licensing and certification
Step 1: Education
Attend an accredited nursing school to earn either an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). An ADN will take between 18 and 24 months to complete, while you can expect to spend roughly four years to earn a BSN. If you already have an ADN, there is an ADN to BSN bridge program that allows you to earn a BSN in 12-18 months. There is also an RN to BSN bridge which takes three semesters of nursing courses to be completed in one year. These programs will save you time and money. The more education you have, the better your chances of landing your dream job.
Step 2: Licensing
When you are six weeks away from graduation, you can apply to sit for the NCLEX-RN exam. There are 75 to 265 questions on the NCLEX-RN with a five-hour time limit for completion. If you do not pass the NCLEX-RN on your first attempt, you must wait 45 days before you can try again.
The NCLEX includes questions on the following topics to test nursing candidates’ knowledge:
1. Safe and effective care environment
2. Health promotion and maintenance
3. Psychosocial integrity
4. Physiological integrity
Step 3: Experience
This step in the process is to gain hands-on experience. This will provide you with invaluable opportunities to work with patients making you attractive to future employers.
Step 4: Certification
The final step is to obtain certifications for your chosen career. Requirements for earning a certification vary so it is important to check with the governing body for information. Incredible Health offers free courses in order to obtain or renew certification requirements. Create a free account to access professional development mandates and get instant certificates.
[ Looking for more support? Get free, personalized career guidance from experienced RNs. ]
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