Can hours earned from a CPR course be applied to the 24 hour continuing education requirement for licensure renewal?
Hours earned after the completion of a Basic Life Support (BLS) course or an Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) recertification course can’t be applied towards the 24 hour continuing education requirement for purposes of licensure renewal.
The Florida Board of Nursing adopted the position of the ANCC, effective as of June 1, 2011.
The following courses ceased to offer continuing education renewal credit as of June 1, 2011:
- CPR/AED certification and re-certification courses, Basic Life Support (BLS) certification and re-certification courses, Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) re-certification courses
- Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) re-certification courses, and Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP) re-certification courses
Continuing education renewal credit will still be permitted for the following:
- Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification courses, Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certification courses, and Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP) certification courses
The ANCC disseminated the rationale in August 2009:
- BLS is no longer an augment to the nurse’s basic knowledge. Therefore it doesn’t meet the definition of continuing nursing education. Universities now require the student to be certified in BLS before ever entering the academic program. BLS is not an augmentation of knowledge; it is a basic preparation for training.
The advanced life support activities meet the definition of CNE because they are not included in the nurse’s basic training and therefore augment that training.
Why must I pay a $5.00 unlicensed activity fee to obtain a license or renew my license?
The $5 unlicensed activity fee is required by Section 456.065, Florida Statutes, and is used by the Department of Health to fund efforts to combat unlicensed activity. All licensees pay a $5 unlicensed activity fee as part of their initial license fee and license renewal fees.
Why must I pay a $5.00 student loan forgiveness fee to obtain a license or renew my license?
The Florida Legislature established the Nursing Student Loan Forgiveness Program (NSLFP) in 1989 to encourage qualified personnel to seek employment in areas of the state where critical nursing shortages exist. The program provides funds to assist in the repayment of nursing education loans. All nursing licensees pay this $5.00 fee as part of their initial license fee and license renewal fees.
Has there been a change to CE requirement rules and regulations?
Yes, a new CE requirement was added during the 2017 legislative session.
s.464.013(6)(C), F.S. now includes a new CE requirement for all Florida nursing professionals.
The Board shall require each person licensed or certified under this chapter to complete a 2 hour CE course on human trafficking, as defined in s.787.06(2).
All nursing professionals must complete this course every biennium beginning January 1, 2019. The first licensees who will need to fulfill this CE requirement are those renewing April 30, 2019.
The course must consists of data and information on all of the following:
• The types of human trafficking
• Factors that place a person at greater risk of being a victim of human trafficking
• Public and private social services available for rescue, food, clothing and shelter referrals
• Hotlines for reporting human trafficking which are maintained by the National Human Trafficking Resource Center and the United States Department of Homeland Security
• Validated assessment tools for identifying a human trafficking victim and general indicators that a person may be a victim of human trafficking
• Procedures for sharing information related to human trafficking with a patient
• Referral options for legal and social services
I passed the NCLEX in the last year. How many contact hours do I need to renew my license?
Nurses licensed by examination, in any state, during the current renewal period are exempt from continuing education requirements for the first renewal period, with the exception of the required 2 hour course in Prevention of Medical Errors, 2 hour course in Laws and Rules that govern the practice of Nursing (beginning with the biennium ending in 2015), and 1 hour course in HIV/AIDS. This exemption is lost if the license is not renewed by the renewal deadline.
How many contact hours do I need for a full biennium?
All Florida-licensed LPNs, RNs, and APRNs are now in a 24-month renewal cycle and must complete 24 hours of appropriate continuing education during each renewal period. The 24 hours must include two (2) hours on Prevention of Medical Errors, two (2) hours in Laws and Rules that govern the practice of Nursing, (2) hours in recognizing impairment in the workplace and every other biennium thereafter (every 4 years), effective August 1, 2017 and two (2) hours on Human Trafficking, as defined in s.787.06(2), F.S., effective October 1, 2017. HIV/AIDS is now a one-time, 1- hour CE requirement to be completed prior to the first renewal. Domestic Violence (DV) CE is now a 2 hour requirement every third renewal (every 6 years). Since Domestic Violence (DV) is a 2-hour requirement, the licensee will have 26 hours of CE during the renewal period when DV is taken.
How many continuing education hours are required for licensure renewal?
Licensed Practical Nurses, Registered Nurses, and Advanced Practice Registered Nurses are required to complete 24 hours of appropriate CE during each renewal period, including two (2) hours relating to prevention of medical errors, two (2) hours in Laws and Rules in Nursing, (2) hours in Human Trafficking, and (2) hours in Recognizing Impairment in the Workplace every other biennium (every 4 years). In addition to these 24 hours of general CE, every third renewal two (2) hours of domestic violence CE must be completed for a total of 26 hours. APRN must also complete (3) hours in Safe and Effective Prescription of Controlled Substances. See Sections 456.013, 456.031, and 456.033, Florida Statutes, and Rule 64B9-5, Florida Administrative Code (FAC) for more information about continuing education requirements.
A nurse who is certified by a health care specialty program accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies or the Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification is exempt from continuing education requirements. This exemption includes general and mandatory nursing continuing education with the exception of Human Trafficking and Safe and Effective Prescription of Controlled Substances.
Nurses who hold both a RN and APRN license may use the same credit hours toward both licenses but must make sure to report them under both licenses for CE compliance.
How many continuing education hours should be within a nurse’s specialty?
Employers may require completion of agency/facility specific continuing education (CE). If you have questions regarding specific CE for your agency/facility, please speak with your supervisor.
Licensed Practical Nurses, Registered Nurses, Clinical Nurse Specialists and Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners are required to complete 24 hours of appropriate CE during each renewal period, including two (2) hours relating to prevention of medical errors. In addition to these 24 hours of general CE, every third renewal two (2) hours of domestic violence CE must be completed for a total of 26 hours. See Rule 64B9-5, Florida Administrative Code (FAC) for more information about continuing education requirements.
Can I use my specialty nursing certification to fulfill the continuing education requirements to renew my license?
A nurse who is certified by a health care specialty program accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies or the Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification is exempt from continuing education requirements. This must be reported to the Department’s tracking system powered by CE Broker.
Please note: The CE exemption based on certification does not apply to the 3 hour Safely Prescribing Controlled Substances course requirement nor the 2 hour Human Trafficking course requirement.
My license is expiring soon and I did not receive a renewal notice. What should I do?
Renewal notices are now sent out as postcards. You may renew online at www.flhealthsource.gov and follow the steps below. Remember, if you wait until the last minute you may run into long wait times.
- Go to flhealthsource.gov and click the ”Renew A License” button.
- Enter your Personal Identifying Information (PII), then click the Login button.
- Confirm or update your MQA Services Account email address, then click the “Continue” button.
- You are now in the Dashboard. During renewals, a “Renew My License” option will populate no later than 90 days prior to your license expiration date. (Note: If you do not see the “Renew My License” option, please check back at a later time.)
*** If the “PII Failed” screen displays, click the ”Other Login Option” button and enter your existing User ID and password to access your account. Your ID and Password can also be reset at www.flhealthsource.gov or you may call 850-488-0595.***
How long does it take to renew my license?
Renewal postcards are sent at least 90 days before the expiration date. You should renew as soon as possible after receiving your notice. Please allow 1-2 weeks for receipt of your new nursing license. To expedite your renewal you may renew online at www.flhealthsource.gov. Your ID and Password can also be reset at www.flhealthsource.gov or you may call 850-488-0595.
Can I continue to work if I have not received my new license by the expiration date?
Yes, nurses who have proof of current licensure may continue to practice without your new license. You can obtain proof of renewal by renewing online where you are able to print a receipt. This should allow you to continue working, but it is ultimately up to your employer.
Is there a number to call to check on the status of my renewal?
Yes, there is a number you can call. However, you or your employer can verify the status of your renewal by visiting our website at: https://mqa-internet.doh.state.fl.us/MQASearchServices/HealthCareProviders. The less information you put in the search engine the better the search function will work. You can also call the Communication Services Unit, (850) 488-0595, to verify the status of your license.
Why is continuing education being verified at renewal?
Continuing Education is a requirement to renew a professional license. Section 456.025(7), F.S. requires the Department to implement an electronic continuing education tracking system for each biennial renewal cycle and to integrate such system into the licensure and renewal system. The two systems are now integrated.
What will happen if I do not have the required continuing education for renewal?
The Department of Health, Medical Quality Assurance will verify a practitioner’s continuing education record in the electronic tracking system at the time of renewal. Practitioners will be able to view their course history in the continuing education tracking system free of charge. The course history will show all the courses that have been reported for the practitioner.
If the practitioner’s continuing education records are not complete, they will be prompted to enter their remaining continuing education hours before proceeding with their license renewal. If the practitioner does not have the hours to report, the license will move to a delinquent status at expiration. In order to renew a delinquent license , the practitioner will be required to complete the continuing education requirements. Additional fees may apply.
Do I have to wait until license renewal to report my continuing education credits to the electronic tracking system?
No, you can report your hours free of charge anytime during the biennium by registering for the Free Basic Account. The Department encourages you to report early to avoid a delay in the license renewal process. For more information please visit www.CEatRenewal.com.
Please note, if you take a course from a Florida Board approved Provider they are required to report on your behalf. If you take a course from a National organization it is your responsibility to report completion.
Does the continuing education provider report my completed continuing education units?
If you take a course from a Florida Board approved Provider, they are required to report on your behalf. If you take a course from a National organization, it is your responsibility to report completion.