Midwife - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

General FAQs

What are the different routes to licensure?

There are a few options for routes to midwifery licensure in Washington

  • Graduate from a Midwifery Education Accreditation Council-approved (MEAC) school;
  • Have a current certified professional midwife (CPM) certification and meet the requirements in WAC 246-834-066. If you don't meet all of the requirements you may apply for a CPM trainee permit to bridge the gap between the CPM and state licensure requirements; or
  • Graduate from an international school and meet the requirements in WAC 246-834-065.
What are the requirements for licensure?

Licensure requirements are in WAC 246-834-060. Also, depending on your route to licensure, other requirements are likely needed. See the section above for specific laws relevant to licensure.

What materials do I include with my application?

Please see the application for complete instructions. All applicants must submit:

  • High school transcripts or their equivalent
  • Current plan for consultation, emergency transfer and transport
  • Proof of 50 observed births
  • Proof of 50 managed births; 30 as the primary attendant, 20 as an active assistant
  • Proof of 50 women for pre-natal care exams and 50 women for early post-partum care exams
  • Proof of three academic years of midwifery training such as: graduating from an approved school, obtaining the CPM certification and bridging the gap requirements or other practical midwifery experience that meets requirements in RCW 18.50.040.
  • Successful North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) results
What are the general requirements for a CPM seeking licensure?
  • Current CPM certification
  • Three years training and or experience
  • Fifty observed, 30 managed, and 20 active participant for births
  • Courses on epidemiology and obstetric pharmacology
  • Fifty women for prenatal and 50 women for postpartum care exams
  • A preceptor to sign off on legend drugs and devices
What is the Washington State exam like?

The exam consists of 80 multiple-choice questions on paper. The best study advice is to be familiar with the content of the NARM exam. There is no state study guide. The exam consists of questions on labor and delivery, newborns, prenatal, anatomy and physiology, pregnancy and post-partum. You have 90 minutes to finish the exam.

What is the jurisprudence exam?

The jurisprudence exam is required for all new applicants for midwifery licensure. This short exam is free, open book, and multiple choice. It covers laws and rules applicable to midwives in Washington. The passing score for this exam is 100 percent. You may take the exam as many times as you need.

What is the renewal cycle?

You are required to renew every year on your birthday.

What are the renewal requirements?

Submitting the Consultation, Emergency Transfer and Transport form. You may fill this form out electronically online or download, print and mail it in.

Data submission on all courses of care for every mother and newborn under your care to a department-approved research organization. The department-approved research organizations are Midwives Alliance of North American (MANA stats), American Association of Birth Centers (AABC), and Community Birth Data Registry (CBDR).

Participation in a peer review program. At least five clinical cases every two years are required.

Thirty hours of continuing education (CE) every three years:

  • A minimum of 25 hours must be directly related to the clinical practice of midwifery.
  • Any remaining hours may be in professional development activities that enhance the practice of the licensed midwife.

A licensed midwife shall obtain CE hours through one or more of the categories listed in WAC 246-834-355. Documentation for all activities must include licensee's name, date of activity, and number of hours.

What forms do I use to log my births or care exams?

You may use any form as long as it's legible and has, at least: columns for the date, client identifier, notes (including your role at birth), and initials of supervisor. The department may approve exceptions for documentation.

License Extensions FAQs

How many license extensions are there? 

There are three license extensions: limited prescriptive, medical devices, and implants. You can get one, two, or all three of them, but you cannot get the medical devices extension or the implants extension, unless you also get the limited prescriptive extension simultaneously.

Is there a fee for the license extensions?

No. Currently there is no fee to get the license extensions.

What are the requirements for the license extensions?

License extensions requirements are provided in Chapter 246-834 WAC

Limited prescriptive  

  • 15 additional obstetrical pharmacology didactic training hours that include the prescription classifications listed in WAC 246-834-250(4) and that provide skills and knowledge beyond entry-level skills or knowledge in antibiotics and contraceptives; and  
  • Evidence of completion of additional training on family planning and treating common, low risk prenatal and postpartum conditions. A clinical experience of at least 20 cases reviewed in consultation with a licensed health care professional who, within their scope of practice, is qualified to use and administer legend drugs and devices described in RCW 18.50.115 and WAC 246-834-250; or  
  • A clinical training course or courses approved by the Department of Health. Contact the midwifery program for more information on this option. 

Medical devices 

  • Requirements for the limited prescriptive license extension (see above);  
  • Submit evidence of completion of training as required by the medical device manufacturers, or an equivalent. The training must include at least three simulated medical device insertions under direct supervision; and 
  • Submit evidence of completion of a clinical experience under direct supervision of four inserted medical devices and one medical device removal.  
  • See Chapter 246-834 WAC for additional information. 


  • Requirements for the limited prescriptive license extension (see above);  
  • Submit evidence of completion of training as required by the implant manufacturers, or an equivalent. The training must be under direct supervision and include at least three simulated implant removals; and  
  • Submit evidence of completion of a clinical experience under direct supervision of one inserted implant and three implant removals. 
  • See Chapter 246-834 WAC for additional information. 
How do I apply for one of the license extensions?

You can find the applications on our midwifery licensing webpage.

Do I have to renew the license extension?

You will attest on your renewal application that you have been actively practicing the elements of the extension(s).

How will people know that I have a license extension?

Your license will display any license extensions you have obtained.