Washington State and Colorado


Hi, all. :)

I've made a couple of posts in the past regarding my desire to return home to the US. I'm a California native but have been living in the UK for years and did my nursing degree here. Currently I'm working on an acute surgery and trauma unit, and loving it.

Still, I'd like to go back to the States at some point in the next few years. I'm fully aware of how tough a nut California is to crack in terms of concurrency, so I accept that I might not ever be able to live and work in back in my SoCal hometown. I do plan on applying to the CA BON and making an attempt at getting on a waiting list somewhere to make up the credits I will need, but I'm also looking at other states that would suit me - namely Washington and Colorado.

I've had a peek at Washington's requirements for foreign trained RNs. Their guidance seems to offer a bit of wiggle room in terms of transcript interpretation, but I get the sense that they're not much more accepting than California. I've not yet taken a look at the requirements for Colorado, but I also haven't heard of any foreign RNs struggling to get their ATT there.

Does anyone have any experience or knowledge related to these two states? I have a social security number and English is my first language, as I'm American, so there's no immigration obstacle for me. But if anyone can offer me any advice/information about Colorado or Washington, I'd be very grateful.

JustBeachyNurse, LPN

1 Article; 13,952 Posts

Specializes in Complex pedi to LTC/SA & now a manager. Has 13 years experience.

You need to have nursing school transcripts that reflect theory and clinical hours in adult med/surg, pediatrics, geriatrics, maternity/obstetrics, and psych/mental health. US & Canadian nurses are generalist trained. UK nurses are specialist trained and usually only midwives receive training in obstetrics.

This is likely going to be your biggest barrier in any US state.


128 Posts

My husband and I submitted our applications to WA BON, we're IEN from the Philippines and they accepted our credential evaluation and found eligible to take the exam. We also graduated in the same school. I guess you need to evaluate your credentials and see if you're good to go with your credentials or do you still need to take some additional courses. They (WA BON) also let you know if there's anything you need to do other than that and their customer service is quite good. By the way, we did the CGFNS Evaluation.


22 Posts

Thank you! That's heartening. Did you have paeds and maternity during your studies, though? In the UK we specialise right away, so my degree is just in adult nursing. I did participate in maternity care and some paediatrics during a few clinical placements, but none of them were specifically geared toward those areas.

Editorial Team / Admin

Silverdragon102, BSN

1 Article; 39,477 Posts

Specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC. Has 35 years experience.

Regardless on state your transcripts must show both clinical and theory in Paeds, Mental Health, Obstetrics and Adult.


128 Posts

Yes, we did, maybe you want to try with the evaluation first, then the WA BON will let you know if you will need to attend some courses. If you noticed, they (WA BON) have a separate form to be send out to your school. CGFNS took about 3-4mos to complete.


6 Posts

@babymich_0922 is it hard to apply for WA BON? I'm from the Philippines too but still thinking what state will I go for my Nclex. How long is the processing time for WA and are you allowed to take the test many times once you failed?

thank you!


128 Posts

@Shmegal to be honest, it's not, it's just that you have to meet a certain criteria for your English exam,hehe that's the horrible part,haha well, atleast for me it is, I'm currently working on it, but my husband had his permission after 4months, it was quick, it really depends on how you would go around with the requirements and when are you able to complete them. My advice is, start with the CGFNS and English Proficiency test such as IELTS or TOEFL and when you have them already send your application to WA BON. You can send me a message if you want, so that we can discuss more about it. :)

@itsangel88 in case you'll see this, delete some of your inbox msgs so that I can send you messages again.


6 Posts

@babymich_0922 thank you for your response :)

I replied to your PM, but they didn't allow me to send my message to you, but anyways I'm just checking to what state will I go for my Nclex. Actually I'm here in MD. What year did you graduate?


128 Posts

Actually I received your response :D