Nurse Practitioner Program in Indiana - IN

Nurse practitioner programs in Indiana, whether in state or online must meet the criteria the state has set forth for licensing. The process is a bit complicated and has requirements that are somewhat different from other states. Interestingly, there is no license specifically for NPs, only an application to prescribe independently as an Advanced Practice Nurse (APN) once a registered nurse (RN) license has already been earned. This does require graduate level coursework that includes pharmacology.

By Indiana state law an aspiring nurse practitioner can gain their RN license either through examination or endorsement. Initially two types of applications must be filed – one with the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency and the other with the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN).

The state application must include a 2.5x3.5 inch color or black and white photograph of the licensee's head and shoulders. The lower front of the photo must have the signature of the candidate, the signature of the school's Dean or Director and be affixed with the school seal. The board requires all transcripts to come directly from the degree awarding institution and provides a Certificate of Completion form. This form must be filled out by the school and received by the board before the applicant can take the NCLEX examination.

The second part of the process is NCSBN registration, which requires passing the NCLEX examination.  After paying fees both to the state and the NCSBN and having the state declare eligibility for testing, an Authorization to Test letter will be sent to the candidate. The exam must then be taken within the valid dates, which can vary, but average about 90 days.

The other way to get a RN license in Indiana is by endorsement. This method requires the application, the photograph with applicant's signature only, proof of current active license from another state and fees. The board must also receive verification from every state or country where any prior current or expired nursing license has been held. With proof of unrestricted license from another state and fees paid, a temporary license may be permitted.

Once an RN license is acquired, the Application for Prescriptive Authority as an Advanced Practice Nurse may be sought. In addition to the application form, another signed photograph, a copy of current Indiana or other compact state nursing license and a fee must be submitted.

Transcripts again need to be provided directly from the institution, this time showing successful completion of a graduate program that is accredited by the Commission on Recognition of Postsecondary Accreditation. Proof of successful completion of graduate level pharmacology courses of at least two semester hours of academic credit from an accredited program must also be provided. Theses courses must have been completed within five years or other continuing education must be documented.

The nurse practitioner program in Indiana requires written collaborative agreements that delineate the relationship between the ANP and the Licensed Practitioner(s) they will be working with. This document needs to be fairly comprehensive and detailed about “cooperation, coordination and consultation.” It also needs to be kept current and updated with any changes.

In addition to Prescriptive Authority, there is a separate application, fee and license for working with controlled substances. The Controlled Substances Registration (CSR) also requires federal registration with the Drug Enforcement Agency.  The ANP only needs one CSR to prescribe at any location in the state but needs separate ones for each location in which controlled substances will be dispensed.

After all the licensing has been acquired, nurse practitioner programs in Indiana also make continuing education part of the renewal process. The 30 credits must come from a nationally and Indiana board approved source and include 8 hours of pharmacology.

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