Welcome to the Board of Registered Nursing

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History of the Board

2012

The Board of Registered Nursing was re-established with a sunset date of January 1, 2016.

2011

The Board of Registered Nursing sunset and became the Registered Nursing Program.

Third sunset review completed and presented before the California Legislature.

The Board became a member of the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Nursys® system which exchanges licensure verification and discipline information between states.

2010

Board re-organizes and adds internal investigators.

2009

Fingerprinting required on all registered nurses licensed prior to 1990.

Governor implements $60 million as second round of five year funding for California Nurse Education Initiative.

2007

Board launches redesigned website.

Board sunset date extended four years

2006

Board member composition restructured: four public members, three direct patient care RNs, one RN educator, and one RN administrator.

2005

Governor implements the California Nurse Education Initiative which provided $90 million to expand and increase nurse education opportunities.

2003

Second sunset review completed and presented before the California Legislature resulted in extension of sunset date for four years.

2002

In collaboration with the Department of General Services, the Board developed an online application system for registered nurses endorsing to California from other states.

2001

The Board became the first California licensing agency to offer online professional license renewal services.

The Board offered online license verification.

Registered nurses became able to change their addresses, request a duplicate license and renew advanced practice certificates online.

The Board streamlined the processing of out-of-state endorsements.

2000

The Board implemented Live-Scan procedures for fingerprinting applicants.

National Council of State Boards of Nursing initiated a new computer system to exchange discipline information between states.

1999

The Board's web page went live.

1998

Certification of Clinical Nurse Specialists established.

1997

First sunset review completed and presented before the California Legislature resulted in extension of sunset date for six years.

The Board replaced paper licenses with tamper-resistant plastic card licenses.

The Board developed an honorary certificate for retiring registered nurses.

1996

Citation and Fine program was implemented.

1994

The last pencil and paper test was given as Computer Adaptive Testing came into existence.

Cost recovery program was implemented.

1993

Certification of public health nurses transferred from Department of Health Services to Board of Registered Nursing.

1992

Furnishing number for nurse midwives established.

1990

Fingerprinting was implemented for all applicants.

1988

National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) begins reporting scores as pass or fail instead of numeric scores.

1987

Furnishing numbers for nurse practitioners established.

1985

Mandatory certification of nurse practitioners established.

Voluntary registration of psychiatric/mental health nurses established for third-party payer reimbursement purposes.

The Board's Diversion Program was established.

1984

Certification of nurse anesthetists established.

1982

National Council of State Boards of Nursing replaced National League for Nursing as the testing service and instituted a comprehensive examination called the National Council Licensure Examination (NLCEX).

1978

Voluntary certification of nurse practitioners established.

Continuing education became mandatory for license renewal.

1977

Board member composition was established: three public members, three direct patient care RNs, one RN educator, one RN administrator, and one physician.

1976

International applicant licenses were no longer accepted for reciprocity, and were required to pass the State Board Test Pool Examination for licensure.

1975

Board's name was changed to current Board of Registered Nursing.

The Nursing Practice Act was amended significantly to provide the current description of nursing.

Certification of nurse midwives was established.

1961

Board's name was changed to Board of Nursing Education and Nurse Registration. One public board member was added.

1946

State Board Test Pool Exam (SBTPE) five-part examination was instituted provided by the National League for Nursing as the testing service.

1939

Board of Nurse Examiners was created by legislation within the Department of Professional and Vocational Standards.

The mandatory Nursing Practice Act was established, regulating nursing through licensure of a defined scope of practice.

Five registered nurse board members were appointed by the Governor.

1927

Bureau of Registration of Nurses was placed within the Department of Health under the State Board of Public Health.

1913

Legislature formed Bureau of Registration of Nurses under the State Board of Health. The Bureau was charged with administering the exam, registering qualified registered nurses, accrediting nursing schools, and revoking licenses of nurses found to be unsafe to practice.

1905

University of California Board of Regents was given power by the Legislature to set standards, administer exams, approve educational programs, issue certificates, and revoke certificates of registered nurses. Use of title "registered nurse" without certification was a misdemeanor.