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Advanced Practice Registered Nurse License Requirements in Georgia

Georgia's Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) receive their authorization from the Georgia Board of Nursing. They must also hold licensure as registered nurses (RNs) in Georgia; the state is not a member of the nurse licensure compact.

The Georgia Board recognizes five advanced practice roles:

  • Nurse Practitioner (NP)
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, Psychiatric/Mental Health (CNS/PMH)
  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM)

Advanced practice authorization is granted on the basis of graduate education and national specialty certification (http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/45/authorization_as_an_aprn).

APRNs are considered mid-level practitioners. They work under protocol agreements. Prescriptive authority is granted by the Georgia Composite Medical Board.

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Select a Georgia Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Topic:

APRN Educational Requirements

A prospective Georgia APRN must hold a degree at the master's level or higher. The program is to offer preparation for the particular role. It is to include coursework in advanced pharmacology.

There are additional specialty-specific academic requirements delineated in state administrative code.

Clinical nurse specialists are to have at least two nursing courses that include clinical practice. They must have coursework in advanced physiology and advanced physical assessment.

Psychiatric/ mental health clinical nurse specialists are to have at least two psychiatric nursing courses that include clinical practice.

APRN Certification Requirements

There are different types of nurse practitioner and clinical nurse specialist programs, focused on different populations. Program choice will determine certification type.

The prospective licensee must earn national certification through an approved certifying agency. The following organizations hold approval (as of 2015):

  • The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
  • American Association of Critical-Care Nurses Certification Corporation
  • The American Midwifery Certification Board
  • The American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • The National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists
  • The National Certification Corporation
  • The Pediatric Nursing Certification Board

A Certified Nurse-Midwife will earn certification through the American Midwifery Certification Board. (State regulations reference the American College of Nurse Midwives Certification Council, which recently became the AMCB.)

A Clinical Nurse Specialist, Psychiatric/Mental Health will earn certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

A Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist will earn certification through the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists.

Recency Requirement

Nurses seeking recognition as nurse practitioners or clinical nurse specialists are expected to demonstrate 500 hours of practice if they graduated four or more years in the past. Those who do not meet this requirement may complete refresher courses. Requirements and pathways are described in Chapter 410-11 of administrative code.

The Application Process

Application forms are available for download from the Board website (http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/45/authorization_as_an_aprn).

CNS and NP applicants will note on the application the type of nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist practice that corresponds with their preparation.

A certification verification form is included in the application packet. The licensing agency asks that the certification agency submit verification via email to the address listed in the packet.

The transcript is to be included in the packet in a sealed envelope.

Applicants who answer “yes” to questions about legal convictions or board disciplinary actions will need to provide detailed letters of explanation as well as supporting documents.

Noncitizens will include a copy of a document that establishes qualified alien status.

The application fee is $60.

Application forms require notarization.

Required materials should be sent together in a nine by twelve envelope to the Board office in Macon.

The licensing agency communicates primarily by email. Applicants can monitor status online.

Renewal Requirements

APRN authorizations are renewed biennially. Applicants are to provide evidence of national certification. A nurse-midwife who was certified before 1996 is to be enrolled in the American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM) Continuing Competency Assessment Program.

Temporary Authorization for Re-Entry

Advanced practice nurses whose national certification has lapsed may be granted temporary Georgia authorization in order to fulfill work experience requirements that may be imposed as a condition of recertification. The temporary authorization is issued for six months. It may be renewed once.

Prescriptive Authority

The prescribing APRN will need a protocol agreement that specifically addresses prescription writing. The delegating physician is to be one who has a comparable specialty area. Forms and instructions are available from the Georgia Composite Medical Board (http://medicalboard.georgia.gov/aprn-forms). Rules regarding prescriptive authority are found in Chapter 360-32 of administrative code (http://rules.sos.state.ga.us/gac/360-32).

The Board of Nursing FAQ includes links to information about prescriptive authority and protocol agreements (http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/45/faq).

There is a $150 fee due to the Medical Board; this fee is waived for individuals employed by state, city, or county governments in Georgia.

Additional Information

APRN information is available from the Georgia Board of Nursing (http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/45). The Board of Nursing can be reached by email at ‘nursing at sos.ga.gov’; response time may be as long as ten business days. Some administrative tasks are handled by the Professional Licensing Boards Division. The Professional Licensing Boards Division can be reached by telephone at 478-207-2440.

Statutes and regulations are subject to change. The state has an APRN Committee; discussion of advanced practice rules was on the agenda for the October 2015 meeting.

The state’s advanced practice professional associations serve as additional professional resources:

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