Travel occupational therapy is an appealing career move for allied health professionals. As an OT or PT, you can travel the country on 3-month contracts with the support of travel therapy companies like CoreMedical Group behind you. One of the biggest challenges for new and seasoned contract therapists is obtaining and maintaining credentials in numerous states, but OT and PT licensure doesn’t have to be stressful.
Continue reading to learn how to get an OT license for multiple states, and how the multi-state PT licensure compact is changing the game.
Multi-State Licensing Made Simple
You may have heard of the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC), which allows travel nurses to maintain a single license without the need to get credentials from each, individual state. Fortunately for physical therapists, there is now the PT compact which is similar to the eNLC. This interstate compact allows traveling PT or PTA professionals to get one license from their home state and work in any of the other compact member states. This helps travel therapists save time, especially when they’re coming to the end of a contract and looking for a new destination or job opportunity.
PT Compact for Traveling Professionals
To become a member of the PT compact, each physical therapist will need to register at PT Compact, meet each eligibility requirement, and pay any fees associated with obtaining the “Compact Privilege” (including state-level and PT Compact Commission fees). Some states also require a jurisprudence exam before, or within 30 days of CP issuance. The sixteen current member states which offer this Compact Privilege are Washington, Oregon, Utah, Arizona, Colorado, North Dakota, Nebraska, Texas, Iowa, Missouri, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, New Hampshire and North Carolina, and at least 10 more states have passed legislation to become part of the compact. Until then, you should check up on PT license processing times and requirements to be well prepared for your next move.
Travel Occupational Therapy Licensing
The PT compact is still in its early stages, and while there is talk about an OT compact following suit with a multi-state agreement of their own, no official legislation has been passed. For now, if you would like to become a travel occupational therapist, you will need to get a license for each state you will be working in. But don’t worry, that’s why travel therapy companies like CoreMedical Group have teams of recruiters along with credentialing and housing specialists ready to help you move from dream job to dream job.
When transferring from state to state, most will require verifications of all OT licenses you’ve held, including both current and expired licenses. Each of the U.S. states will also need a transfer of your NBCOT scores, which can quickly be completed through the NBCOT website. There are a handful of states that require the completion of specific CEUs for licensure, and some states require original transcripts to complete a transfer.
As you can see, each state has different OT license processing times and requirements, which may affect whether you can jump on an assignment ASAP or in a few more months. For instance, Alabama and Montana typically only take up to one week to process a license, whereas Wisconsin and Louisiana can take anywhere from 6-10 weeks.
Worry-Free Licensing with Your Recruiter
Being a travel PT or OT gives you countless opportunities to grow and adapt in your profession that someone working a more permanent position might not receive. Licensing in multiple states should not keep you from exploring new facilities and destinations all over the U.S. If you take some time to do your research and lean on your travel therapy recruiter, you can be on the road to your next adventure in no time!