As the healthcare industry nationwide battles nursing staffing shortages, burnout, and growing demand for qualified professionals, there is a significant strain on healthcare systems. Registered nurses (RN) practicing after obtaining their licenses must stay abreast of their renewal requirements. Failing to renew your RN license in Texas can have significant consequences. A lapse in your license prevents you from practicing, and nurses failing to renew on time will likely face disciplinary action from the Texas Board of Nursing.
Practicing as a nurse in the Lone Star State can be an incredibly rewarding experience. Experienced registered nurses in the state can earn over $94,000 per year. To ensure you get to the experience level necessary for higher income, you must stay atop your license renewals and nursing continuing education requirements.
By renewing your license on time, every time, you can keep pace with the latest developments in healthcare. Not only will it allow you to continue practicing and gain more experience, but it will also help you become better at care delivery and improve patient outcomes. This informative guide created by Fast CE for Less provides the steps necessary to renew your RN license.
The Steps Necessary to Renew Your Registered Nurse License
Each state’s nursing board sets its own requirements for registered nurse license renewals. According to the Texas Board of Nursing, registered nurses must renew their credentials once every two years.
Even if you are not near the time to renew your license, learning the nursing board requirements for license renewal in Texas beforehand can streamline the process when the deadline approaches. This section of the guide will cover what you must know about renewing your RN license in Texas.
Step 1: Identify the Application Deadline
The most important thing to know about renewing your RN license, is when you must submit your renewal application. In Texas, you must renew your license once every other year.
Once issued, every two years, your license will expire on the last day of the month you were born. Suppose you were born in an even-numbered year. In that case, your application deadline will be the last date of that month every even-numbered year. Sixty days before your license expires, the Texas Board of Nursing should mail you a renewal postcard to your last known address on file. To ensure you do not miss the reminder, you must provide your most current address to the board.
If you have not received the postcard and are unsure about your license renewal deadline, check the status on the Texas Board of Nursing’s license verification portal here.
Step 2: Fulfill Your Nursing Continuing Education Requirements
Completing nursing continuing education courses is a critical part of renewing your registered nurse license. During every renewal period, the Texas Board of Nursing requires you to complete at least 20 contact hours of continuing education courses. While nurses renewing their credentials for the first time are exempt from this requirement, you must be aware of it for your next renewal period.
Here is a quick overview of the requirements for continuing education that can make you eligible for RN license renewal in Texas:
- At least two hours on forensic evidence collection for emergency department nurses
- For nurses in geriatric or older adult care, at least two hours on older or geriatric care
- At least one hour on human trafficking prevention
- Every six years, at least two hours in nursing law and ethics
Step 3: Complete the Application for License Renewal
Please note that you cannot submit an application for license renewal at any point during the two-year renewal period. You can only submit the application within 60 days of the date of your license expiration. To begin your license renewal application, visit the Texas Board of Nursing portal here.
After logging in, you will be able to see whether your license is nearing renewal. If it is time to renew your license, the portal will show you the renewal link you must click. After accessing the renewal portal, provide answers to all questions asked and fill in the information regarding your continuing education. Once you reach the last step, you will be required to make a payment.
To renew a registered nurse license, the Texas Board of Nursing charges a $68 fee. After you complete the payment, the board will send you a confirmation email. After receiving your renewed license, you can print it out using the verification portal to complete the process.
Understanding Nursing Continuing Education Requirements
Every two years, you must renew your license as a registered nurse in Texas. To fulfill your continuing education obligations, you must complete at least 20 hours of continuing education. Fortunately, registered nurses nearing their first renewal after obtaining their licenses are exempt from this requirement. That said, you are required to provide copies of the Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) certificates during audits upon request.
For every renewal period after your first one, you must fulfill the 20-contact-hour requirement. Every six years, the 20 contact hours must include at least two hours on nursing law and ethics.
For every renewal period since your first, RNs working in the emergency department must complete at least two hours of forensic evidence collection. If you work in geriatric care, you must complete at least two contact hours of older adult or geriatric care continuing education courses. Additionally, you must complete an hour on human trafficking prevention, offered for free at the HHS Learning Portal here.
To learn more about your nursing continuing education obligations for license renewals in Texas, visit https://www.fastceforless.com/nursing-ce-texas.
In addition to understanding the continuing education requirements, you must know that completing courses provided by state board-approved resources is critical for license renewal. This is where Fast CE For Less can help. Visit www.fastceforless.com to access online nursing CEUs available in convenient and affordable bundles. Accepted by the Texas Board of Nursing, these online CEUs will help you fulfill the requirements for your RN license renewal.