Your life may be getting a whole lot easier soon.

That’s because the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact has officially launched, which means it’ll now be easier for you to obtain licensure in 18 states.

Here’s what you need to know.

What is it?

The Interstate Medical Licensure Compact Commission is a group of state medical board executives, administrators and attorneys who came together to find a better way to help physicians get licensed.

The Commission created the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC), which allows states to more freely share licensing information, thus creating an expedited process for physicians to get licensed in multiple states. In turn, physicians will have an easier time going to work in multiple states and getting to patients who need them most.

So far, 18 states have agreed to the terms of the IMLC, reflected in the map below (via imlcc.org). Each state had to pass legislation authorizing the state to join the compact.

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“Currently, when a physician submits an application in a particular state, all of the application items, information, and documentation remain within that particular state,” said Carol Dorsey, Director of Licensing at Jackson & Coker. “If utilizing the Compact, the physician would submit all of this information one time, not over and over again with every state where he or she would be applying.”

According to the Commission, most physicians qualify to take part in the new licensure process. Once you qualify, you’ll be able to select any of the Compact states where you want to practice.

What does it mean for me?

For physicians, the IMLC means freedom – to easily and quickly work in different states and serve populations who need you.

“The biggest benefit for physicians will be the decrease in time it will take to receive licenses in multiple states,” said Diana Shepard, Communications Chair of the Interstate Licensure Compact Commission. “Particularly, those physicians involved in telemedicine, locum tenens practices and providing access to quality care in rural areas of the country.”

Some states are able to process an application within weeks, which will then be distributed to all states requested by the applicant for licensure. This drastically cuts the time required by the previous model, in which physicians had to apply and wait weeks in each individual state.

When will it take effect?

The Interstate Medical Licensure Compact Commission has begun accepting applications as of mid-April 2017.

What is the future of the Compact?

“We are very excited about the IMLC, and many persons volunteered hundreds of hours toward this project,” Shepard said. “We believe it’s that important!”

“It’s our hope that eventually all 50 states will adopt the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact,” she added, noting that the Commission only became a reality in October 2015 and has already had great participation.

Need help obtaining a license or applying for this exciting opportunity? click here