Saturday December 3rd 2016

Court: Nurses must have chance for input

A recent legal victory ensures that RNs will have an opportunity to express their concerns when California’s education department proposes regulatory changes that affect school and other nurses.

The ruling is significant in underscoring the state board of nursing’s authority in regulating nursing practice and protecting against other agencies issuing regulations that affect nursing practice without the profession’s input.

“The nursing profession is committed to vigorous self-regulation to ensure provision of safe and high-quality care,” said Karen A. Daley, PhD, RN, FAAN, who was the American Nurses Association (ANA) president at the time of the ruling. “It’s a dangerous practice to allow other professions to make unilateral decisions about how to provide safe health care services that fall under nursing’s responsibilities. The court made a wise ruling in the best interests of nurses, students and patients.”

A California appellate court agreed with ANA that the California Department of Education violated state law when it promulgated a new regulation in 2007 allowing unlicensed school personnel to administer insulin to students with diabetes. The education department issued the regulation without giving nurses and other stakeholders notice and a chance to comment, a violation of California’s Administrative Procedures Act, which says no regulation can be enacted without such notice and a comment period.

The education department’s 2007 regulation ran counter to long-standing positions published by both the department and the California Board of Registered Nursing that said unlicensed school employees could not administer insulin. California’s Nursing Practice Act provides that administering medication is a nursing function, and the Nursing Practice Act prohibits unlicensed individuals from engaging in the practice of nursing.

In a related decision, the California Supreme Court ruled in favor of the American Diabetes Association in 2013 to allow unlicensed personnel to administer insulin to students, overriding two lower courts that ruled that the practice was an unlawful violation of the Nursing Practice Act’s prohibition against the unlicensed practice of nursing.

The current ruling by the California appellate court on requirements to provide notice and opportunity for comment does not affect or overturn the California Supreme Court’s decision allowing unlicensed personnel to administer insulin to students.

Leave a Comment

More from category

ANA welcomes U.S. Supreme Court decision on women’s health
ANA welcomes U.S. Supreme Court decision on women’s health

The American Nurses Association hailed the 5-3 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court June 27 in the Whole Woman’s [Read More]

Tackling nation’s opioid epidemic
Tackling nation’s opioid epidemic

In what is being hailed as the most sweeping drug addiction legislation in years, Congress mustered a bipartisan effort [Read More]

Texas nursing program teams up with Meals on Wheels
Texas nursing program teams up with Meals on Wheels

The psychosocial risks for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease among the underserved and disadvantaged elderly [Read More]

What patients need to know when going to the hospital
What patients need to know when going to the hospital

A road map to a speedy recovery Hospital visits can be intimidating for patients. On top of already being sick or in [Read More]

ANA urges nurses to help stop gun violence

In the wake of the Orlando, FL, massacre, the American Nurses Association issued a declaration June 25 calling for [Read More]