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Use of Inactive Nurses During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Posted 4 months ago

The Iowa Board of Nursing has communicated with healthcare agencies in the state with the following memorandum:

TO:  Iowa Nursing Employers

FROM:  Kathy Weinberg, Executive Director

DATE:  March 19, 2020

SUBJECT:  State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Proclamation

Governor Kim Reynolds issued a State of Public Health Disaster Emergency activating the public health response and recovery aspect of the State Disaster Emergency Plan effective at noon on March 17, 2020. The following section of the proclamation directly impacts nursing and nurses in Iowa.

SECTION TEN. Pursuant to Iowa Code § 29C.6 (6), I temporarily suspend the regulatory provisions of Iowa Code § 147.10 and Iowa Admin. Code rules 653-9.13(6) and 9.14, rules 655-3.7(5), rules 645-261.8, and rules 645-326.9(8), and all other implementing administrative rules which prohibit the practice of medicine and surgery, osteopathic medicine and surgery, nursing, respiratory care, and practice as a physician assistant, by a licensee whose license is inactive or lapsed. Suspension of these provisions is limited to licenses that have lapsed or expired within the five (5) years prior to this Proclamation and is further limited to the provision of medical and nursing care and treatment of victims of this public health disaster emergency and solely for the duration of this Proclamation.

Should your agency choose to utilize inactive nurses, please consider the following items:

  • Verify the inactive license of the nurse by accessing IBON Online Services at this LINK. Note: This step will verify the nurse had an Iowa license at some time and it has been inactive less than five years.
  • Check the IBON Online Services for any record of public discipline.
  • Check the Abuse Registry for any record at this LINK.
  • Check the Office of Inspector General Exclusionary List.

To clarify, this is for Iowa nurses who have been inactive for less than five years and is limited to the provision of nursing care and treatment of victims in this public health disaster emergency and solely for the duration of this Proclamation.

See the Governor's press release at the following link: State of Public Health Disaster Emergency