According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, there are approximately 26,000 registered nurses in the state of Utah, with nearly 1,700 working as advanced practice registered nurses. Multiple employment projections from AACN, Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, and the Department of Labor all point to the same conclusion: more nursing positions are needed and expected to be created throughout the state. Individuals interested in joining the profession can choose from a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs offered by nursing schools in Utah. Discover available programs, learn about licensing requirements, and review occupational outlooks for nurses in Utah.
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Utah Licensing Info
The Utah State Board of Nursing is part of the state’s Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. It manages the licensing requirements and for both registered nurses and advanced practice registered nurses. Review the following section to learn about what it takes to be fully licensed in the state.
- Graduate from a state-approved, accredited nursing education program
- Submit online application to the Board of Nursing along with a $100 processing fee
- Submit fingerprints for a criminal background check
- Provide official education transcripts, including a school seal and information about the completed degree and date of graduation
- Register for National Council Licensure Examination with Pearson VUE and pay a $200 testing fee during the final semester
- Wait for an Authorization to Test and then schedule the examination
Utah’s Renewal Process
Registered nursing licenses in Utah expire on January 31 of every odd-numbered year. It’s important to note the renewal period is not tied to the applicant’s date of licensing or their birthday, as it is in many other states. In order to renew a license, nurses must complete one of the following continuing education or work requirements:
- 400 hours of licensed practice during the past two years
- 200 hours of licensed practice and an additional 15 hours of approved continuing education credits during the past two years
- 30 hours of approved continuing education credits
Renewal applications are submitted online and the renewal fee is $58.
Utah Advanced Practice Licensure
The state of Utah approves APRN licensure for the following specializations: nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, psychiatric mental health nurse specialist, certified nurse anesthetist, and certified nurse midwife.
All APRN licensees must follow these steps to qualify for licensure in Utah:
- Submit an online application and pay $140 application fee
- Complete and submit a qualifying questionnaire
- Pass a criminal background check
- Have official transcripts sent from approved advanced practice educational program that also documents coursework in pharmacotherapeutics, diagnosis and treatment, and patient assessment
- Submit national certification verification from an approved advanced practice certifying body
- Individuals not licensed as registered nurses in Utah must submit official verification of a nursing license from their state of residence
Individuals whose specialization includes the administration of controlled substances must apply for a Utah Controlled Substance License. The process includes an application form, additional fee of $100, and a controlled substance affidavit. APRNs working in mental health must also complete at least 3,000 hours of post-certification clinical practice to be eligible for licensure.
Forms, additional information, and programs regarding advanced practice registered nursing can be found at the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing.
UT RNs: Employment and Career Outlook
According to the Center on Education and Workforce, Utah is projected to be the national leader in terms of employment growth across the health care industry. Of the state’s projected 47,000 job openings between 2010 and 2020, 28 percent are expected to be in the field of nursing. The state is experiencing an uptick in career opportunities not only for registered nurses, but also for advanced practice nurses. Data from the Utah Medical Education Council found that the number of active advanced practice registered nurses increased by 52.4 percent between 2003 and 2013. The following statistics offer a closer look at the occupational outlook and career earnings for nursing jobs in Utah.
Top-Paying Areas for RNs in Utah
|Area||Hourly Median Wage||Annual Median Wage|
|Salt Lake City||$29.85||$62,080|
|West Central Utah nonmetropolitan area||$27.42||$57,040|
|Northern Utah nonmetropolitan area||$27.38||$56,960|
|Eastern Utah nonmetropolitan area||$26.45||$55,020|
Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014
Utah vs. National Numbers
|Year||Annual salary(25th percentile)||Annual salary(median)||Annual salary(75th percentile)||Annual salary(25th percentile)||Annual salary(median)||Annual salary(75th percentile)|
|Certified Nurse Midwife||$46,790||$79,910||$89,550||$0||$82,580||$96,970||$114,090|
|Certified Nurse Midwife||0||5,110|
2022 occupational outlook 050,000100,00025,160N/A2202,4107,70043,900
|Certified Nurse Midwife||0||7,700|
|Certified Nurse Midwife||0||290|
Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014 and Projections Central
Utah Nursing Resources
This regulatory body oversees the practice of nursing in Utah, along with establishing and managing the licensure process for registered and advance practice registered nurses.
UACH is a state-based affiliate for the Future of Nursing Campaign for Action. Comprised of numerous healthcare stakeholders, including the Utah Organization of Nurse Leaders and the Utah Department of Health, the UACH has launched numerous initiatives to improve access to nursing education for students and create leadership opportunities for practicing nurses.
The Utah Nurses Association is a professional organization for registered nurses in the state. A membership-based association, the UNA acts on behalf of nurses on public policy and legislative issues, offers continuing education and licensure renewal programs, hosts conferences, and provides a career center for members.
Utah Organization of Nurse Leaders UONL is an affiliate of the American Organization of Nurse Executives. The organization offers membership to nurses in health care management, administration or operations, including individuals currently enrolled in a graduate program of nursing. The organization also offers workforce development initiatives, health policy advocacy and nursing leadership programs.
The state branch of the National Student Nurses’ Association, the Utah Student Nurses Association is a pre-professional association for students enrolled in Utah-based nursing program.