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Continuing Competence

Looking for continuing education programs on-line? Try the NCSBN Learning Extension web site

License Category Continuing Education Requirements Active in Practice Requirements
APRN Specialty certification = 30 of the 60 required contact hours and an additional 30 hours should include 5 hours of Pharmacology. For licensees with an active DEA # for prescribing in NH: 3 of the 5 hours must address opioid prescribing, pain management, or substance abuse disorder. Proof of completion should be sent to the board office.

400 hours active in practice specialty in the 4 years immediately preceding date of application.

If newly graduated as an APRN within the previous 2 years before licensure, program coursework and clinical count for 1st renewal.

LNA 24 contact hours in the two years immediately preceding licensure. Conferences, lectures or other education offerings designed to enhance nursing assistant knowledge, judgment, and skills or successful completion of nursing assistant competency test within 2 years of date of application. A minimum of 200 hours of nursing assistant related activities under the supervision of a licensed nurse within the 2 years immediately prior to the date of application or successful completion of nursing assistant competency testing within 2 years prior to date of application.
MNA 8 of the 24 required contact hours for LNA Licensure must be related to medication administration. A minimum of 50 hours of medication nursing assistant related activities under the supervision of a licensed nurse within the 2 years immediately prior to the date of application.
RN/ LPN 30 contact hours in 2 years immediately preceding license application including workshops, conferences, lectures or other education offerings designed to enhance nursing knowledge, judgment, and skills. 400 hours active in practice in 4 years immediately prior to date of application, or have completed a board approved refresher program within 2 years of application or have successfully completed NCLEX examination within 2 years of application.

Please note

The Board does not require that your contact hours be earned at conferences that provide "official" contact hours granted by a professional organization. However, the educational offering must:

  • Have specific objectives that guide the learning
  • Pertain to and enhance the licensee’s knowledge, skills and judgment
  • Pertain to the licensee’s scope of practice
  • Have a method for evaluating the learner’s attainment of the objectives
  • Maintain a list of attendees

The licensee should maintain documentation of attendance that includes: the title, length and date of the offering and the name of the entity providing the offering.

Activities/Topics Eligible for Continuing Education Activities/Topics NOT Eligible for Continuing Education

(One contact hour = 60 minutes of organized learning)

  • Initial or renewal of ACLS/BLS certification
  • Nursing art and science
  • Nursing education, practice and research
  • Research in health care
  • Biological, physical or behavioral science
  • Management, administration or supervision of health care delivery
  • Teaching or learning principles
  • Ethical or legal aspects of health care
  • Content offered in basic nursing educational programs
  • Health care trends, issues or policies
  • Initial education related to management of new nursing related technology or equipment
  • Initial education related to a clinical procedure
  • RN/LPN re-entry course
  • Initial nationally recognized certification (30 contact hours)
  • LNA written and clinical exam
  • Emergency Preparedness/Disaster Preparedness
  • Authorship of a published professional nursing article or book
  • Nursing or nursing related grant writing or research
  • Completion of one or more credits in school, college or university that enhances nursing knowledge and skills

(One academic credit = 15 contact hours)

  • Initial development of a professional presentation (3 contact hours for every 1 hour of class – first time only)
  • Participation in Quality Assessment or Risk Management studies
  • Preparation and initial participation on a professional nursing panel
  • Clinical practice related to the policies/procedures of the facility where you are providing nursing care.
  • Orientation specific to employment i.e. computer course, documentation, human resource policies.
  • Orienting/precepting an employee or student.
  • Being oriented/precepted to a position.
  • Attendance at business and/or professional meetings unless the activity enhances nursing knowledge, judgment and skills.
  • Duplicate activities reviewed within a reporting period i.e. annual competencies and retraining.
  • Courses which focus upon self-improvement changes in attitude, self-therapy, self-awareness, weight loss and yoga.
  • Economic courses for financial gain, e.g., investments, retirement, preparing resumes, and techniques for job interviews, etc.
  • Courses designed for lay people.
  • Liberal arts courses in music, art, philosophy, and others when unrelated to patient/client care.
  • Courses which focus on personal appearance in nursing.

Individualized Learning Activities are acceptable and may include:

  • Programmed learning units offered on the internet and in professional nursing literature, books, magazines or journals **
  • Instructional units on television, audio/video cassettes, computer technology or compact disc **

** There is no limit to the number of contact hours that can be completed through independent study. However, individualized learning courses must have some method of verifying that the course was completed.

New Hampshire Board of Nursing
121 South Fruit Street   |  Concord, NH 03301
Nursing (603) 271-2323  |  Nursing Assistant (603) 271-6282
Fax (603) 271-6605