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Kentucky Medical License

Medicallicensing Team • 4 June 2024 (updated)

License Requirements

  • Accredited Medical or Osteopathic School
  • Examination Scores
  • AMA/AOA Profile
  • All State Medical Licenses
  • NPDB-HIPDB Report
  • FSMB Disciplinary Board Report
  • Fingerprint Cards
  • Average Processing Time: 3-4 months

Training Requirements

  • Kentucky Requires FCVS
  • 4 Attempts at Each Step or Level
  • 2 Years Minimum Postgraduate Training Required
  • No time limit on USMLE or COMLEX

Kentucky Medical Licensing Board

Kentucky Medical License Application

The Kentucky General Assembly established the Kentucky State Medical Society in 1851, since its inception the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure remains committed to protecting the public and improving the well-being of the Commonwealth’s residents.

The Board consists of seven doctors of medicine, one doctor of osteopathy, and three lay citizens. It also includes the Commissioner of the Department of Public and Family Health and the 3 Deans of the local medical Universities.

Over the last year, the Board has evaluated 1,619 applications, issuing 1,301 initial medical licenses and 277 osteopathic licenses. Additionally, 699 temporary permissions, 323 residency training permits, 29 institutional training authorizations, and three professor licenses were issued. The Board has issued 915 medical licenses via the IMLC and 186 letters of qualification to Kentucky physicians pursuing licensure in other jurisdictions.

Currently, 21,868 practitioners are renewing medical or osteopathic licenses for 2024, including 12,576 actively practicing in Kentucky.

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Kentucky Medical License Requirements

Except for a few specified exceptions mentioned in KRS 311.560 (2), anybody practicing medicine or osteopathy in Kentucky should hold a valid license granted by the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure.

The KBML’s licensing staff reviews each application per the Board’s legislation and regulations. Efforts are continually made to ensure that applications are handled quickly and available for Board approval at quarterly meetings.

  • Applicants must demonstrate competency by passing a Board-approved test. Four attempts for each step or portion are allowed.
    • USMLE Steps 1, 2, 3
    • NBME Parts 1, 2, 3
    • NBOME Parts 1, 2, 3
    • COMLEX Levels 1, 2, 3
    • FLEX Components 1 and 2
    • State Board Exam (if taken before 1972)
  • International graduates must hold a permanent ECFMG certification or prove to be a diplomat of an approved American specialty board.

Since March 1, 2005, the Kentucky Board has mandated the Federation Credentials Verification Service (FCVS) for several licensing types, including regular medical/osteopathic licenses and various training and faculty licenses.

Kentucky joined the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact in September 2020, which provided physicians with an accelerated licensure process. To be eligible, physicians must possess a license with no restrictions in a member state and complete all nine IMLC qualifying standards, including specialty board certification as well as an FBI background check. This compact significantly simplifies the process for physicians wishing to practice in multiple states, reflecting a significant advancement in medical licensing efficiency.

How to Get a Kentucky Medical License

In Kentucky, physicians in their first year of postgraduate training (PGY1) don’t need a license, according to KRS 311.560 section 2(c). However, after this initial year, they must obtain an Institutional Practice Limited License or a Residency Training License to continue practicing in the state.

A Regular License is granted to physicians who complete all legislative and regulatory licensure requirements, including two years of authorized postgraduate training. Additionally, a Temporary Permit (TP) may be awarded to applicants who fulfill the qualifications for a normal license but must begin operating in Kentucky before the Board’s next scheduled meeting. This permission is valid for a maximum of six months.

The procedure of getting a Kentucky state medical license differs depending on the kind of license needed—Regular, Resident, Institutional Practice, Faculty, or Fellowship. How to apply:

The Department of Medicaid Services requires that your name match precisely as it appears on the social security card.

  • After setting up your profile, you’ll fill out basic demographic information. Follow the instructions to fill out the application form online. Fill out the online application form according to the instructions provided. Following submission, pay a non-refundable fee with a credit card or an ACH debit.
  • Once you’ve completed your payment, you’ll be brought to your profile page, where you’ll discover a link to the application instructions and forms. These forms must be filled out to complete your application. Note that these forms are designed to be fillable for your convenience.

If you have an inactive license, do not create a new account or pay the application fee again. Instead, contact the Board directly for guidance on reactivating your license. Remember, this fee is non-refundable.

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Kentucky Residency, Training, Institutional Practice, Faculty, and Fellowship Licenses

If you’re gearing up to enter a postgraduate training, fellowship program, or eyeing a faculty position, it’s crucial to determine the right type of medical license you need in Kentucky. 

  • Institutional Practice Limited License (IP)

Tailored for physicians entering an accredited residency program in Kentucky, this license confines your medical practice to your training program’s parameters. Valid from July 1 to June 30 each academic year, it requires renewal annually. Eligibility demands the completion of one year of accredited postgraduate training plus Parts 1 and 2 of the USMLE or COMLEX.

  • Residency Training License

Created to enable healthcare professionals to practice within the Kentucky residency training program and allows for moonlighting at locations approved by your Program Director. It also qualifies healthcare providers to apply for a DEA license.

  • Faculty License (FL)

Specifically for physicians appointed to faculty positions at Kentucky teaching institutions who may not meet all statutory licensure requirements.

  • Fellowship Training License (FT)

Aimed at physicians entering a Kentucky fellowship program or international medical graduates who have completed medical school outside the US or Canada. This license is valid only within the Kentucky Fellowship Program, does not permit obtaining a DEA license, and is renewable annually for one year only.

Processing Time for Kentucky Medical License

The application procedure for a medical license in Kentucky usually takes 60 to 90 days. This comprises all forms of licenses, from temporary permissions to permanent licenses. Full approval from the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure (KBML) is necessary before any permanent license is issued, once the application is complete.

However, some factors might extend this timeline:

  • Disciplinary Actions: If you have a disciplinary action on the record, the review procedure may take 30-60 days.
  • FCVS Packet Processing: The first assessment of your Federation Credentials Verification Service (FCVS) packet may take up to 40 days.

Unlike other state medical boards, KMBL requires all candidates to acquire Board approval at one of its quarterly sessions. These sessions are held in March, June, September, and December. To satisfy these deadlines, submit your application three to four weeks in advance.

Kentucky Medical License Cost

  • Regular License: $300
  • Resident License: $75
  • Institutional Permit: $75
  • Faculty License: $250
  • Fellowship License: $75

There is no additional fee for the temporary permit as it is included in the $300 fee for the regular medical/osteopathic license application.

Physician Assistant License

To work as a physician assistant in Kentucky, you must have an attending physician and a substitute supervising physician. You’ll also need to fill out an online form on the KBML website, with a fee of $100 which is non-refundable. Also, you must print out the addendums required for licensure. If you’re changing jobs, your new supervising physician must complete an application for supervision and pay the fee to the Board.

Kentucky Telemedicine License

Out-of-state providers licensed in a compact state can perform online medical care in Kentucky without a new license. Physicians licensed in another jurisdiction and frequently practicing medicine or osteopathy in Kentucky can participate in telehealth when summoned to treat a specific patient.

Furthermore, Kentucky citizens temporarily placed outside of the state can obtain telehealth services from KY Medical Board-licensed clinicians. Similarly, non-Kentucky citizens who are temporarily in the state can obtain telehealth services from clinicians licensed by their home state’s professional licensure board.

Kentucky Medical Board License Renewal

Physicians licensed in KY must complete 60 credits of CME every three years, 30 hours must be in AMA Category I.

HIV/AIDSNo longer required.
Domestic Violence TrainingPrimary care physicians who were licensed after July 1, 1996, are required to take a three-hour domestic violence program within three years of receiving their license. 
This criterion applies to physicians practicing family/general practice, pediatrics, internal medicine, emergency medicine, obstetrics/gynecology, and preventive medicine/public health.
Prescribing Controlled SubstancesDoctors who prescribe or administer controlled drugs must complete 4.5 hours of Board-approved Category I CME. This training must address the usage of KASPER (Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting), pain management, and substance abuse.
Pediatric Abusive Head Trauma Pediatricians, radiologists, family practitioners, and emergency or urgent care providers must attend a one-time, one-hour course on pediatric abusive head trauma. 
This course was required to be accomplished by December 31, 2017, for those already licensed, and during the five years of licensing for those who became licensed after that date.
Addiction MedicineEvery three years, physicians with a DEA license to prescribe buprenorphine (either mono-product or combined with naloxone) are required to complete 12 hours of Category 1 CME specifically related to addiction medicine.

As your three-year cycle concludes, the Board will include a form with your annual renewal application to confirm your CME completion. Physicians may be randomly selected for an audit and must provide proof of their completed CME hours.

If a physician has not finished their CME hours for justifiable reasons, they may request a grace period by April 1st of the next CME cycle for a charge of $100. Failure to satisfy CME requirements or get an extension leads to a minimum fine of $200 plus a six-month term to comply. If compliance is not satisfied after this time, the physician’s license will be suspended until they can present proof of completed CME obligations.

Kentucky Medical License Lookup

The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure (KBML) offers an official online verification system for active license holders. The Board does not accept written requests but directs users to their digital platform for efficient processing.

The system provides basic details for physicians, physician assistants, acupuncturists, athletic trainers, and surgical assistants. You can look up active licenses directly online. Note that temporary permits and fellowship training licenses are exceptions and cannot be verified through this platform.

Once payment is completed, the verification can be downloaded and printed immediately. Please ensure you have the capabilities to save or print the document as you will only have one chance to do so. KBML does not send verifications by mail; it is your responsibility to print and forward them to the requesting party.

kentucky medical license

Other professions, including cosmetology, nursing, or dentistry, need you to visit the appropriate boards’ websites to access their verification means. Here are a few links that could prove useful:

Kentucky Medical Licensing Service

Navigating the medical license procedure in Kentucky can be difficult, particularly for international graduates. At MedicalLicensing.com, our professional staff can assist in simplifying the process and give several benefits, including:

  • We manage the full license procedure, including eligibility checks, professional history investigation, application completion, and submission of all required credential verifications.
  • Our pricing is simple and obvious, so you know precisely what to anticipate.
  • You will be assigned a dedicated license specialist who will offer frequent progress updates and precise instructions throughout the process.
  • We will track the status of your application and communicate with all relevant parties to guarantee a smooth and efficient procedure.

From start to finish, we have your KY medical license covered, our services save you time and stress, allowing you to focus on your career as a physician, PA, or nurse.

Frequently Asked Questions About Kentucky Medical Licenure

  • How do I apply for a medical license in Kentucky?
    To apply for a medical license in Kentucky, you need to submit an application through the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure (KBML) website. The application process involves providing personal information, professional education and experience, and passing the necessary exams. Additionally, you will need to complete a criminal background check and provide supporting documentation.
  • How long does it take to get a medical license in Kentucky?
    The processing time for a medical license in Kentucky varies based on individual circumstances, but it typically takes 60 to 90 days for the KBML to review and approve your application.
  • How much is a medical license in Kentucky?
    The cost of a medical license in Kentucky varies depending on the type of license and the applicant’s qualifications. For example, the fee for an initial medical license is $300 for physicians, $100 for physician assistants, and $125 for RNs and LPNs. There are also additional fees for background checks, fingerprinting, FCVS profile, and NPDB self-query report.
  • How to expedite a Kentucky medical license?
    You can apply for a regular license online and submit all the required supporting documentation as soon as possible. The KBML also offers a Faculty License for physicians who are employed by a medical school in Kentucky and who need to expedite their licensure process. However, the KBML does not guarantee expedited processing and it is subject to their discretion. Another option is to use a medical licensing service that can help you with the application process and speed up the licensure time.
  • What are the CME requirements for a Kentucky medical license renewal?
    Kentucky requires physicians to complete 60 hours of continuing medical education (CME) every two years, including at least 30 hours in Category 1 courses. Physician assistants must complete 40 hours of CME every two years, and registered nurses are required to complete 14 contact hours of continuing education annually.
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State Requirements

Check out individual state requirements by clicking the links down below.