Refresher programs: My licence has lapsed, ugh, retesting sounds challenging, advice?

  1. Hi All,
    After working as a Neonatal Nurse Practioner for 10 years I "retired", and have been living abroad for several years. I am really wanting to return to nursing and realized I must first get my licence back. Does anyone have advice on how they have chosen to study for the exam? Any and all help would be greatly appreciated. Being in Hong Kong, I have lots of free time, can do online course work, but have no availablity to do any clinical here. But for now I think the matter of preparing to retake an exam I havent taken in 25 years is a tad daunting!
    Thank you and love the site....
  2. Visit debbren profile page

    About debbren

    Joined: Feb '09; Posts: 29; Likes: 5
    from US
    Specialty: L&D , NICU


  3. by   caliotter3
    I would get a review book, preferably Saunders 4th edition, and go through that. You can use Suzanne's plan which you can read about in the stickies at the top of this forum. You might feel that you need a review course. Doubt that there is one available in HK. But there might be. You need to find out from your state's board of nursing whether they will require you to take a review course before testing. Some states require this, others don't. Other than going through one or more review books, and taking a review course, can't really offer any solutions. An internet search should reveal if any online reviews are available. Good luck. And welcome to the site!
  4. by   debbren
    Great, thanks a million....
  5. by   NRSKarenRN
    suzannern our former staff member with expertise in helping new grads and foreign trained nurses pass nclex...along with other members advice and experiences gathered together to form our nclex discussion forum

    1st thing to do: check out the state boards of nursing regulations regarding license reinstatement. some permit refresher course completion, others require nclex testing if license lapsed so many years.

    there are several online refresher courses available; most include didactic + clinical time to receive completed certificate. the amount of hours vary be course. my advice for posters needed to retake nclex due to licensure lapse is to start with nclex review book and do practice tests first. if scoring well, look at ce websites, and take course contant that you are weak in as refresher. if not scoring well above 75% then take refresher course --especaily if not practiced in 10+ yrs. be aware some refresher courses require active license as clinicals required & only offered at facilites sites while other programs offer classes seperate from clinicals that can be arranged in your area.

    do your internet homework: search for "online rn refresher course". following programs may interest you

    [color=#2200cc]rn refresher online | university of delaware | professional ...
    rn refresher course information - central colorado area health ...
    mount carmel college of nursing
    south dakota state university, college of nursing
    [color=#2200cc]michigan center for nursing - nurse refresher programs

    article: outcomes-based research: evaluating the effectiveness of an online nurse refresher course

    [color=#2200cc]rn refresher courses at | nationwide refresher course ...

    good luck on this journey
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Mar 14, '11 : Reason: updated links
  6. by   SuzeeW
    I second the advice to check each state's specific requirements. There is a huge difference between a refresher course and reactivation.
    I also allowed my license to lapse and moved to another state in the meantime. Being out of the field for 13 years I would have to return to my original licensing state, reactivate, then apply for acceptance in my current state.
    Congratulations for wanting to return to the field. I didn't imagine seeing myself wanting to do that same thing, but I do. And I am actually so jazzed at even the first steps to reactivating my license!
  7. by   debbren
    Such great information, thank you...I will be repatriating in 18 months or I have lots of time. I will be in NY so I have already glanced over the requirements. Your list will be most helpful to me.

    Thank you again, and I really love this site...

  8. by   debbren
    Nice to know I am not alone. How are you doing with your efforts to get reinstated? I know I just have to decide to bite the bullet...and all this encouragement really helps.
  9. by   SuzeeW
    It's a good thing, you have plenty of time to check out the requirements and utilize Suzanne's plan. From what I've read here, it sounds incredible!
    I moved from PA to DE and the hoops I would have to jump through would bankrupt me lol I've contacted the DON here in DE and totalled up my costs. It actually will be less expensive in the long run to actually begin again.
    I can't believe it but it's true.... I am hoping that the regs might change in the next year or so but I doubt it.
    In any case, I will be doing the reviews and checking out Suzanne's plan when the time comes. I just hope the economy doesn't make it even harder to get a position.
    Please keep us posted on what the requirements are to get reinstated. I'm learning more about this all the time!

    I had to add this: When I spoke to the PA BON they would NOT accept a refresher course from the U of D (University of Delaware) due to the omission of a standardized exam at the end of the course. I would have to arrange that exam and a preceptorship on my OWN. And no hospital in my area in DE had a BSN that was willing to go out on a limb as a preceptor for clinical evaluation.
    If I attended Northampton CC or Montgomery Area CC for the Reactivation, I would have to stay up there for most of the weeks, and even then DE wants to play politics and "maybe" they would accept the Reactivation from PA. If not, I could retake an entire Refresher Course here in DE....
    With the amt of money and time spent in class I should have an honorary doctorate lol
    Last edit by SuzeeW on Feb 5, '09
  10. by   LisaDNP
    And the moral of this story, ladies and gentlemen, is NEVER, EVER let your license lapse even if you happen to win the lottery and plan to never work as a nurse again. You just never know what might happen.....

    Seriously though, I can't even imagine taking the boards again after all these years. Bless your heart! Best of luck to you. You certainly are a brave soul.
  11. by   SuzeeW
    Lisa, you are SO SO right! And your words should be tatooed on every student nurse at her pinning ceremony!
    If I think about what I'm planning to do, I want to run screaming lol so I just smile and tell myself it will all be just fine What's driving me now is my desire to serve. I've done the selfish thing for the last several years. I stayed at home and was the Mom with cocoa and cookies when they got off the school bus. I made mad money at the beach bartending and working for a Chef for the Hotel DuPont.But at the end of the day, I hadn't really helped anyone.
    Oh, one reg client at the restaurant had Alzheimer's. I would help his wife get him to stand and put his coat on him
    You know what I mean though, at the end of the day, it has to be about something other than you.
    That's what will keep me from running screaming off of this path that I have to admit I created for myself.
    NEVER let your license lapse! NEVER.
  12. by   debbren
    You are so right....NEVER LOOSE THAT LICENSE.....I have just downloaded and printed the 40 page NY state Licensing application packet...will let you know how it goes....looks like I need..
    1. 2 CE, one on infection control, one on child abuse...NYS regulations...can do these online...
    2. Submit my application and $ with proof of education
    3. Retake NCLEX exam...

    Will see how we step at a time...
  13. by   SuzeeW
    One step at a time is exactly right We'll do this, and once we've both passed the exam and we're full and true RN's in practice, we will know even better the meaning of "you don't know what you've got till it's gone!" Good luck and we can keep each other and the board posted in our process. We can serve as good examples to others
  14. by   debbren
    Today I have started tackling the very large job of tracing my nursing license from TN, GA, CT and all that entails. My license actually expired 10 years ago in CT, but I wont be living there, I will be moving to NY (lots of husband transfers...)so I will try to speak to NY folks and get an idea if they will pick up my old CT license and have me refresh in NY and take NCLEX. The more I am doing the more focused I get. It is a lot of paperwork, but once I actually know what I have to do...that should be much a way.
    Good luck...and I am really motivated by how much they need good nurses like us still!