Getting your nursing license is a BIG achievement.
But that’s just the beginning — you need to keep it updated so it won’t expire.
Now, depending on whether you’re a CNA, an LPN, an RN, or an APRN, you may need to fulfill different renewal requirements.
If you’re wondering what you need to focus your attention on, look no further.
We’re going to tell you everything you should know about nursing CE requirements in Alaska.
Are you ready? Here we go!
Alaska Nursing CE Requirements
If you want a preview of the various CE requirements, the table below breaks that down for you.
|CNA(Certified Nurse Assistant)||24 CE credits and 160 hours of paid CNA duties every 2 years (even-numbered years)|
If your certification is first issued on the first half of the renewal period — 12 hours of CE credits and 160 hours of paid CNA duties
If your certification is first issued on the second half of the renewal period — no CE credits or employment hours needed
Every renewal thereafter — 24 hours of CE credits and160 hours of work
|LPN(Licensed Practical Nurse)||Choose 2 of these for each 2-year renewal:|
30 CE hours
60 hours professional nursing activities
320 hours nursing employment
|RN(Registered Nurse)||Choose 2 of these for each 2-year renewal: |
30 CE hours
60 hours professional nursing activities
320 hours nursing employment
|APRN(Advanced Practical Registered Nurse)||Every 2-year renewal cycle:|
Current national certification
Current RN license
At least 320 hours working as an APRN in the last 2 years
If seeking to renew prescriptive authority:
Current national certification that indicates completion of the continuing education mandated by that body
If holding a valid federal DEA registration number:
Additional 2 hours in pain management and opioid use and addiction
Must be registered with the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) controlled substance prescription database
The following section dives deeper into the requirements of each. You’ll see that there are several things you need to keep in mind as you go through your license renewal.
Alaska CNA Continuing Education Requirements
Certified Nursing Assistants in Alaska need to renew their license every 2 years. The renewal period runs from April 1 to March 31 and always happens in an even-numbered year.
All CNAs need to study 24 CE hours per renewal cycle EXCEPT during the first one.
Now, here’s where it gets a bit confusing.
In Alaska, your Continuing Education requirements change depending on when you first got your CNA certification. Let’s look at a specific renewal period — April 1, 2022 to March 31, 2024.
Let’s say you got your CNA certification before April 1, 2022. In preparation for your renewal in 2024, you need to complete 24 CE units and perform at least 160 hours of paid CNA duties.
Now, if you received your CNA Certification on or after April 1, 2022 but before April 1, 2023, you only need 12 CE units and perform at least 160 hours of paid CNA duties when it’s time to renew it.
That’s because you have less time to complete the CE units compared to those who already had their CNA certifications before April 1, 2022.
What if you finished your CNA training and received your license after April 1, 2023? You’ll still need to renew it by 2024, but you won’t need to complete any CE units or employment units.
It’s important to note that you must earn from your work. Your employer will need to submit your Employment Verification Form to Alaska’s Board of Nursing.
Being self-employed doesn’t exempt you from submitting the Employment Verification Form. However, it will have to be filled out by any of the following:
- A client for whom you worked
- A client’s legal guardian
- A client’s healthcare provider (their nurse or physician)
If you don’t fulfill these requirements, you’ll have to retake the test or repeat CNA training.
Alaska LPN Continuing Education Requirements
LPNs need to renew their licenses every 2 years.
There are 3 options for LPNs in Alaska to complete their renewal requirements. They can complete 30 CE units, earn 60 hours of professional nursing activities, or work as an LPN for 320 hours.
Don’t get overwhelmed — you don’t need to do everything. As long as you meet any 2 requirements, you’re all set.
A Licensed Practical Nurse in Alaska needs to complete 30 CE units during the 2-year renewal period. These must be in any of these subjects:
- Nursing practice areas and specific health care problems
- Physical, biological, or behavioral sciences
- Aspects of healthcare concerning law and ethics
- Managing health care personnel and administering patient care
As much as possible, earn these CE hours from programs that meet specific accreditation standards of organizations such as the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).
If you have difficulty finding these, you have the option to earn CEUs through in-service nursing education. Just remember that these have to be offered by a licensed healthcare facility. Also, you can’t get more than 10 CE hours through this method.
The second option is to participate in 60 hours’ worth of professional activities. By definition, “activities” refer to engagements where you use your knowledge in nursing to better the health conditions of individuals or communities. However, you should not receive any compensation while doing these.
That said, if you provide nursing care to immediate family members, those don’t count towards your professional activities hours.
Your last option is 320 nursing employment hours. It’s the most straightforward item on the list — you need to work as a Licensed Practical Nurse for that long.
Remember, if you complete 30 CE hours, you only have to fulfill one other requirement. Either get 60 hours of professional nursing activities or work as an LPN for 320 hours.
Remember that LPN licenses expire on September 30 of even-numbered years.
So, if you are licensed as an LPN for the first time on or after October 1 of an odd-numbered year, then you don’t need to submit any proof of continuing competency for your first renewal period.
For example, if you were licensed on October 30, 2021, you will still need to renew your license before September 30, 2022. However, you will not need to submit any CE requirements for your first renewal period since you had less than a year to comply.
Alaska RN Continuing Education Requirements
Continuing Education requirements for Registered Nurses are similar to those of Licensed Practical Nurses. You also have 3 options to choose from, but only need to fulfill 2 to be eligible for license renewal.
First, you can earn 30 hours of Continuing Education Units. If you can find programs that meet the standards of the ANCC or similar organizations, you can take all 30 hours there.
If not, you can earn CEUs through in-service nursing education provided by a licensed healthcare organization. There is a cap to this, though — you can only get a maximum of 10 CE hours this way.
Second, RNs can also complete 60 hours’ worth of professional activities. You should not receive compensation for them since these are voluntary.
Lastly, you can work as a Registered Nurse for at least 320 hours within the renewal period.
The license of an RN in Alaska expires on November 30 of even-numbered years.
If you receive your RN license on or after December 1 of an odd-numbered year, then you will not be required to comply with CE requirements for your first renewal period.
Alaska APRN Continuing Education Requirements
APRNs also need to renew their licenses every 2 years.
To do so, you have to make sure that your RN license is active and in good standing. You cannot practice as an APRN with an inactive RN license.
You must also hold a current national certification for your particular APRN role and population focus area.
Aside from that, you must submit an employment verification form that you have worked as an APRN for at least 320 hours in the last 2 years. This form should be sent directly from your employer to the Alaska BON.
If you are seeking to renew your prescriptive authority, then your national certification should indicate that you have completed all the CE requirements mandated by that national organization.
If you hold a valid federal DEA registration number, then you need to complete an additional 2 hours of CE in pain management and opioid use and addiction. You should also register with the PDMP controlled substance prescription database.
Frequently Asked Questions About Nursing Continuing Education in Alaska
Here are the most commonly asked questions about CE nursing in Alaska to provide you with more information.
Aside from the ANCC, what other organizations provide programs LPNs, RPNs, and APRNs can attend to earn their 30 CE hours?
There are several bodies included in this list. You can look for programs provided by the following:
- Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME)
- Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) — courses must be tagged with a “P” or carry an identification number
- A certifying body for nurse practitioners
- A certifying body for anesthetists
What activities can help LPNs, RNs, and APRNs fulfill the requirement on professional activities?
Since LPNs, RNs, and APRNs need 60 hours of professional activities, it’s best to be clear about what falls under this category.
If you do any of the following, it’ll add to your hours for professional activities:
- Working with a health- or nursing-related outfit
- Contributing to written work (articles, books, or other publications) connected to healthcare
- Writing a book about healthcare
- Developing and presenting a paper on nursing philosophy, theory, or techniques
- Conducting a research study related to nursing or healthcare
If I voluntarily provide nursing care for family members and am not compensated for it, can it count towards my hours on professional activities?
Unfortunately, even if it is uncompensated work connected to nursing, it will not give you the hours you need to renew either your LPN, RN, or APRN license.
It’s a lot, we know. But let’s look at the bright side — now you have all the information you need.
Your license renewal isn’t something you should take lightly. Now you know what you need to do, you can start working towards that renewal.
If you need additional information, you can go to Alaska’s Board of Nursing website.
Last updated: April 4, 2023 (Requirements taken from Alaska BON website)