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Navigating the Nursing Profession in Maine

Updated: Oct 6, 2022

Let us help you land on your dream job here in Maine! Read on this article to know more about the licensing process in Maine, and more!


Through this article, you will be able to know the following:

  • Fees for the licensing

  • Licensing renewal process (step-by-step)

  • Requirements for Continuing Education in Nursing

  • Licensing and certification

  • Job and Salary Expectations of Nurses in Maine

  • Popular hospitals in Maine

  • Nursing associations in Maine

  • Contact details


Fees for the Licensing

The table below shows the required payments for the licensing, whether you are a first-time nurse, applying by endorsement, or renewing your license. For more information, visit the Maine licensing page.


Type of LicenseApplication FeeNCLEX FeeFirst-time nurse (by examination)RN: $75 LPN: $50$200Already a Registered Nurse (by endorsement)RN: $75 LPN : $50 APRN: $100 ($50 for each specialty)N/ALicense RenewalRN/LPN: $70 APRN: $100N/A

As a nursing compact state, Maine lets nurses obtain multi-state licenses

*Fees may change without any notice.

**A background check is required in most states, but prices are not usually indicated.


Licensing Renewal Process

  1. Check when your license expires by visiting the Maine Board of Nursing website. Maine has a Verification page for you to verify your license.

  2. Complete all your continuing education requirements BEFORE your license expires.

  3. Apply for your renewal process by going to the Maine Board of Nursing. You may check on the Renewal Information page for more specific information. Be reminded that if your Primary State of Residency is not Maine, you can not apply for a licensure in Maine because it is a compact state. You must declare that Maine is your Primary State of Residency to be able to do so.


Requirements for Continuing Education in Nursing

The following are the Continuing Education Requirements for nurses in Maine.

  • For RN/LPN, there are no requirements

  • For APRN, you must have 50 contact hours every 2 years

Three hours of Category I education on prescribing opioid medication are required to Licensees with prescriptive authority

The Maine State Board of Nursing accepts courses that are ANCC accredited.


Licensing and Certification

Step 1: Education

To earn an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), you must attend an accredited institution that offers ADN for 18-24 months. You can also take a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Degree in an accredited institution. These programs typically take 4 to 5 years to complete. If you have an ADN but you wanna pursue your bachelor’s, there are certain programs that let you earn your BSN in 12 to 18 months. There is also an RN to BSN program that will take one year for you to earn the degree. Said programs let you save on time and money as you work towards advancing your career.

Step 2: Licensing

Six weeks before your graduation, you can start the process of your application for the NCLEX-RN exam. This exam is composed of 75-265 items and you will be given a limit of 5 hours to finish all of it. Failing the exam does not necessarily mean that you do not have the chance anymore. After your first try, you just have to wait for 45 days and you can apply again.

The scope of NCLEX includes questions about: (1) health promotion and maintenance; (2) safe and effective care environment; (3) physiology and integrity; and (4) psychology and integrity.

Step 3: Experience

This time, you must learn how to take the opportunities in gaining first-hand experiences in dealing with patients, with colleagues and superiors, and with the different situations that you might face. These invaluable experiences will make you more attractive to bigger employers in the future.

Step 4: Certification

Your last step is to obtain certifications for your chosen career. There are different requirements for earning a certification, depending on your preferences so it is important to check with the governing provider for information. You can attend several trainings, seminars or workshops in varied institutions for this purpose.


Job and Salary Expectations of Nurses in Maine

Shortage of healthcare professionals, specifically nurses, has been a perennial issue in the country. This makes nurses highly in demand during this period of time. This profession will increase by about 9% from 2020 to 2030. The average annual salary is currently $73,630.

Let us help you check out average wages of nurses to help determine if Maine is the right place for you.


Popular Hospitals in Maine

Still not decided on whether to work as a nurse in Maine or not? This list of the best hospitals in the state will surely help you make that decision to go in the right direction. U.S. News and World Report made a list of the best and popular hospitals in Maine. Here are some of them:

  • Maine Medical Center – (Portland, ME):

    • Regionally ranked #1 in Maine and in Portland

    • Rated high performing in 13 adult procedures and conditions

    • General medical and surgical facility and a teaching hospital

    • Part of the Magnet Recognition Program®

    • Specialties include Lung Cancer Surgery, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Knee & hip replacement, and Back Surgery (Spinal Fusion)

  • Eastern Maine Medical Center – (Bangor, ME):

    • Regionally ranked #2 in Maine

    • Rated high performing in 6 adult procedures and conditions

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Heart Attack, Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Repair, Kidney Failure, and Heart failure.

  • Houlton Regional Hospital – (Houlton, ME):

    • Rated high performing in 1 adult procedure or condition

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Orthopedics and Pulmonology & Lung Surgery.

  • LincolnHealth – (Damariscotta, ME):

    • Rated high performing in 1 adult procedure or condition

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Orthopedics and Pulmonology & Lung Surgery.

  • MaineGeneral Medical Center – (Augusta, ME):

    • Rated high performing in 3 adult procedure or condition

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Cancer, Cardiology & Heart Surgery, and Pulmonology & Lung Surgery.

*The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) awards Magnet Status to Hospitals that apply and meet certain criteria. This award is also considered as the “gold standard” for excellence in nursing practice and care.


Nursing Associations in Maine

Becoming a member of a nursing association opens a lot of opportunities to your career growth. It gives you the advantages of varied job offers and networking, and a bunch of information and experiences shared between you and your fellow nurses. Through these organizations, learning and professional growth never stop. Listed below are just a few of the nursing organizations that you can find and join once you are in Maine.

American Nurses Association – Maine: “Members of this association came from all work settings. Their goal is to become excellent in their profession as nurses.”

Maine Nurse Practitioner Association: “This organization targets to become one in advocating Nurse Practitioners in political, professional and rules. They also plan to develop and coordinate education and networking opportunities for the benefit of Maine Citizens’ Health.”

Maine State Nurses Association: “This organization leads in promoting best quality healthcare, while expanding and updating Medicare covering all Americans.”

For more information about the nursing associations, you may visit the comprehensive list of national organizations as well.


Contact Details

Maine State Board of Nursing

Phone: (207) 287-1133

Fax: (207) 287-1149

161 Capitol Street

158 State House Station

Augusta, ME 04333-0158

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