Maine Nurse Practitioner Licensure Steps - 2024

AKA: Maine NP License, APRN Licensure

by Staff

Updated: February 13th, 2024

Nurse Practitioner Licensure Requirements in Maine

Follow below to learn how to become a nurse practitioner (NP) in Maine.

Initial Registered Nurse (RN) License

Already have your RN License?  Skip to the next section

Prospective advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), and NPs, must hold a valid and unencumbered registered nurse (RN) license to practice in Maine which may be a single state license or an NLC multistate license from one of the member states.

The application process involves the submission of an application form, payment of required fees, and provision of supporting documents as requested by the Maine State Board of Nursing. You can apply for an RN license by Examination or Endorsement.

RN by Examination

This is the preferred route for recent graduates of board-approved nursing programs from institutions in Maine or programs that are judged equivalent to these by the board.

  • The minimum academic qualification for an RN is an associate’s degree. However, for those seeking an eventual NP license in Maine, a bachelor’s degree will get you further along the educational requirement process.
  • For those who completed their program in Maine, your institution is required to send your transcript to the board. However, if you opted for an out-of-state program you have to request that your awarding institution send an original copy of your transcript to or to the board at:
Maine State Board of Nursing
158 SHS
Augusta, ME 04333
  • Foreign-trained nurses are to have their credentials evaluated by the Commission of Graduate of Foreign Nursing Programs (CGFNS). A report of this evaluation must be sent to the board or made available for viewing on the CGFNS website.
  • Take and pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) which you can register for at PearsonVue for $200. You should register for the test after completing your license application online for a non-refundable fee of $75 as this allows the board to notify the examiners about your eligibility for the test. After this, you should receive an Authorization to Test (ATT).
  • You will be required to upload a copy of a recent photo (not your passport, driver’s license, or national ID) as well as a manually signed signature page as electronic signatures are not accepted.

RN by Endorsement

This is the preferred route of application for an RN with a valid license issued in another state or jurisdiction in the US.

  • Applicants are expected to have completed an undergraduate nursing program awarding at least an associate’s degree and passed the NCLEX-RN examination or an equivalent test for entry-level nurses in the state where they were previously licensed.
  • Transcripts are to be sent to the board from your awarding institution, showing your date of graduation and the degree obtained.
  • Foreign-trained nurses are to have their credentials evaluated by the CGFNS. Those trained in a language other than English must submit proof of taking and passing an English Language Proficiency test such as TOEFL or IELTS.
  • The application process is completed online for a non-refundable fee of $75.
  • All applicants are required to verify their current license which can be done using the Nursys platform provided that your board of nursing reports to Nursys. If they do not, you will need to contact that board regarding the verification of licenses. This applies even though you were licensed in a foreign country.

You will be required to provide your social security number during the process as a license will not be issued except you have one.

All applicants are also mandated by law to submit their fingerprints for a criminal background check to be done on them at the state and federal levels. This process is compulsory for initial licensure and can be started here by selecting the “I want to obtain a criminal background check” option and following the prompts. The results of the check are valid for 90 days hence it is safer to begin the process after sending in your application.

Advanced Education Requirements

Prospective NPs are required to have obtained at least a master’s degree studying a nurse practitioner preparatory program.

These programs should have clinical and coursework components that prepare you to serve at least one population focus. You are also expected to be taught advanced pharmacology, advanced pathophysiology, and clinical management.

The program should also equip you to fulfill the requirements for national certification. Ideally, you are expected to apply for an APRN license within at most five years from the date you completed your NP preparatory program or have proof of practicing specialty nursing for at least 1500 within the same timeframe.

If prescribing medications are among the tasks that you would like to carry out, you must complete at least 45 contact hours of advanced pharmacotherapy. Your training must cover the ethical and legal aspects of prescribing medications including medication appropriateness and interactions.

National Certification

Once you complete your postgraduate program the next step in your journey to becoming licensed as an NP in Maine is seeking national certification. This is a process that evaluates the quality of your training and your fitness concerning skill and knowledge for the role of an NP.

Certification is granted by national certifying agencies specific to NP specialty areas and population foci. Hence, you are to contact the agency that certifies professionals in your chosen area.

The process is usually examination-based and Maine allows applicants two attempts. One may be certified in more than one area, however, they must submit different licensure applications for each of these.

You must maintain your certification if your license to practice as an APRN in Maine is going to remain valid. Here are the approved agencies for NP certification as approved by the Maine State Board of Nursing:

  • National Certification Corporation (NCC)
  • Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB)
  • American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)

Getting Licensed to Practice as a Nurse Practitioner in Maine

Applications are completed online for a non-refundable fee of $100.

As applicants for an APRN license are expected to have obtained a master’s in an NP program, proof of completion of such programs is required in the application process in the form of transcripts that must be sent to the board by the awarding institution. The transcript should contain your date of graduation and the type of degree obtained.

All applicants are also required to have a valid RN license to practice in Maine or an NLC RN license from their state of permanent residence. Verification of licensure is also required. This can be obtained using the Nursys platform for a $30 fee. If your board of nursing does not report to Nursys you will need to contact them concerning licensure verification. Proof of certification must also be sent to the board from your national certifying agency.

Note that all applicants for initial APRN licensure are legally bound to take part in a fingerprint-based criminal background check and to declare all convictions and disciplinary actions they are being subjected to. All supporting documents for the APRN application are to be sent by mail or email.

If your role requires you to prescribe medication, then you must apply for prescriptive authority. Applicants for this must have completed 45 contact hours of advanced pharmacology or an equivalent course preparing one for prescribing medications ethically. If you have prescribed medications in the last two years, you must submit a letter of verification of current prescriptive practice signed by your supervising MD or NP.

Now would also be a great time to mention that all new NPs must undergo mandatory supervision for 2 years. You can register your supervisory relationship here for $50 by selecting the option register or change NP supervisor. If you have not prescribed in the last 2 or 5 years, you will be required to have completed 15 or 45 contact hours of pharmacology within the last two years.