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State Bill Advances to Implement Interstate Professional Licensure Compact

Bill would address background check issue that has prevented implementation for nursing and other professional licensure compacts in Pennsylvania

April 15, 2024

State lawmakers today advanced a bill that brings Pennsylvania closer to participating in the multistate Nurse Licensure Compact and Medical Licensure Compact.

This morning, the House Professional Licensure Committee advanced House Bill 2200, which contains long-awaited provisions that would resolve issues associated with federal background checks. The bill, sponsored by Frank Burns (D–Cambria), is an important next step to pave the way for Pennsylvania’s participation in the interstate compacts.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • About:  During 2021, Pennsylvania lawmakers passed legislation bringing the state into the Nurse Licensure Compact, a multistate agreement that allows licensed nurses who meet uniform requirements to practice across state lines.
    • Pennsylvania had previously passed a bill allowing state-licensed physicians to work in other states participating in the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact.
  • The issue:  State officials have been working with the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) to address administrative issues associated with federal background checks. This has been a hurdle to moving compact participation forward.
  • The solutions:  Lawmakers said House Bill 2200 provides a “universal solution” that has been pre-approved by the FBI to address the background check issue across interstate compacts.
  • Next steps:  The bill moves to the full House for consideration.
  • Quotable:  “Interstate compacts maximize Pennsylvania’s opportunities to increase its labor force by enabling out-of-state licensed professionals to relocate and work in the commonwealth,” HAP’s Roadmap for Growing Pennsylvania’s Health Care Talent noted.

Fully implementing the interstate professional licensure compacts has been a top priority for HAP and the hospital community. HAP has been working at the state and federal levels to address this issue.

HAP thanks lawmakers in the licensure committee—and Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick and other federal stakeholders—for this important work to support the health care workforce.

The bill and this morning’s meeting are available online.