How to Become a Nurse in Wyoming
As the least populated state in the nation, Wyoming faces a number of labor issues in the healthcare field. Due to its aging population and a shortage of talent in the nursing industry, those wishing to pursue a career in nursing have numerous opportunities in Wyoming.
There are nine nursing schools in Wyoming with many different programs for students to choose from. Wyoming is also a member of the enhanced nursing license compact which allows licensed nurses in other participating states eligibility to practice in Wyoming as well. This flexibility in licensure paired with ample employment opportunities makes the nursing programs in Wyoming a promising place to start a nursing career at any level. Students can learn about Wyoming's licensing requirements for CNAs, LPNs, RNs, and APRNs below.
How to Get Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) Certification in Wyoming
To work in a licensed nursing home, CNAs must be registered on the Wyoming Nurse Aide Registry maintained by the Wyoming Department of Health. To become a certified nurse aide in Wyoming, an aspiring CNA must graduate from a CNA training and competency evaluation program that is approved by the state. The next step is to submit an application and $60 fee; there’s also a requirement for fingerprint cards and another $60 processing fee for the background check. Applicants must also pass the NATCEP or another comparable national exam.
CNAs must pay a $50 fee every two years to renew their CNA registration. This occurs in October of even years. There are three ways for CNAs to demonstrate continuing competency. The first is to complete 400 hours of employment as a CNA. The next option is to complete 200 hours of employment, plus 15 hours of continuing education. The third option for CNA licensees is to complete 30 hours of continuing education in their field. If a Wyoming CNA licensee doesn’t meet any of these requirements, they must repeat their training and competency evaluation before renewing their license.
How to Get a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) License in Wyoming
Students who wish to pursue a Wyoming LPN license must graduate from a board-approved LPN pre-licensure nursing education program. Next, they must submit the application and $130 fee, as well as submit to a criminal background check with fingerprints along with an additional $60 processing fee. After these conditions are met, applicants must pass the NCLEX-PN exam. Those who fail the exam may sit for the exam no more than 10 times within five years after they graduate from their nursing program.
LPNs must pay a $90 renewal fee when it comes time to renew their Wyoming nursing license in October of even years. Additionally, they must meet competency standards throughout the licensing period. The first option is to complete 400 hours of active nursing practice, but this can drop to 200 hours if the LPN also completes 15 hours of continuing education. No active practice hours are required for nurses who complete 30 hours of continuing education.
How to Get a Registered Nurse (RN) License in Wyoming
The Wyoming Board of Nursing requires aspiring RNs to graduate from a board-approved RN pre-licensure nursing education program. Once this nursing program in Wyoming is completed, aspiring RNs may submit a license application and $130 fee. At the same time, they must also submit a criminal background check and fingerprint cards along with a $60 processing fee. Following these steps, Wyoming RN license applicants can sit for the NCLEX-RN exam, which must be passed in order to successfully become licensed in the state.
The renewal period for Wyoming nursing licenses happens every two years and the fee for an RN is $110. Licensees must complete a renewal application and meet competency requirements during the two-year period. RNs may either accumulate 400 hours of active nursing practice or 200 hours of practice combined with 15 hours of continuing education. Another option is to forego active nursing practice hours and instead opt for 30 hours of continuing education.
How to Get an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) License in Wyoming
Obtaining a Wyoming advanced practice registered nurse license starts with graduating from an accredited graduate or post-graduate level educational program designed for APRNs. Graduates must complete a program of study in a role and population focus area and also pass a corresponding national certification exam. Once those milestones are met, applicants must fill out an application and $250 fee, which includes licensure as both an RN and APRN. They also need to submit fingerprint cards for a criminal background check and a $60 processing fee.
APRNs must pay a $180 fee as part of the Wyoming nursing license renewal process, plus an extra $70 for each certification and another $70 for prescriptive authority. Continuing competency must be evidenced by maintaining a current national certification as an APRN in the recognized role and population focus area. A Wyoming APRN license with prescriptive authority has additional requirements to meet, including the completion of 15 hours of continuing education in pharmacology and clinical management of drug therapy.