Government announces additional duties for nurses

By Charles Lefebvre
November 23, 2018 - 3:43pm

CALGARY, AB — New regulations announced by the Ministry of Health have expanded the roles and duties of nurses in Alberta.

On Friday, Health Minister Sarah Hoffman announced changes to the Registered Nurses Professional Regulation. Under the new regulations, nurses will be able to prescribe drugs at travel clinics, sexually transmitted infection programs and workplace health and safety clinics.

Nurse practitioners will now be able to set bone fractures and order x-rays.

“Nurses have always played a vital role in Alberta’s health-care system, and their future as a profession has never been brighter,” Hoffman said in a statement. “I’m proud our government is supporting nurses to use their frontline expertise and training to help Albertans get the care they need sooner and closer to home.”

“This is not only a milestone for registered nursing practice in Alberta but an important step towards providing people with access to medications and tests when they need them,” said Dennie Hycha, president, College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta, in a news release. “These changes can improve access to timely, cost-effective health care by maximizing the contributions of registered nurses who are the largest group of health professionals working in our health system.”

Registered nurses will not be able to prescribe controlled drugs or substances, according to the release.

There are approximately 38,500 registered nurses in Alberta, along with 550 nurse practitioners.

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