About the Board of Registration in Nursing

An overview of the Board's history and responsibilities.

History

Our historical timeline outlines many significant events for nurses in Massachusetts, dating back to 1872. The Massachusetts Board of Registration was created in 1910 for licensure by examination of Registered Nurses only. That's over 100 years of history! These highlights celebrate the past, present, and future of nursing.

Additional Resources

Responsibilities

Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 13, sections 13, 14, 14A, 15 and 15D and Chapter 112, sections 74 through 81C authorize the Board of Registration in Nursing to regulate nursing practice and education. Pursuant to these laws, the Board:

  • Makes, adopts, amends, repeals, and enforces regulations we deem necessary for the protection of the public health, safety and welfare
  • Issues advisory rulings and opinions which guide nursing practice and education
  • Approves and monitors nursing education programs which lead to initial licensure
  • Issues nursing licenses to qualified individuals
  • Authorizes qualified nurses to practice in advanced roles
  • Verifies the licensure status of nurses
  • Collects fees established pursuant to the provisions of Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 7, section 3B
  • Investigates and takes action on complaints concerning the performance and conduct of licensed nurses
  • Audits the continued competency of nurses
  • Administers the Substance Abuse Rehabilitation Program
  • Prepares and publishes materials it deems integral to the delivery of safe, effective nursing care, including an annual notification to all licensees of changes in laws and regulations regarding nursing education, licensure and practice
  • Participates as an active member in the National Council of State Boards of Nursing
  • Provides regulatory guidance and conducts conferences, forums, studies and research on nursing practice, nursing education and related matters

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