A registrant in the course of practising nursing may do any of the following:
perform a procedure on tissue below the dermis, below the surface of a mucous membrane or in or below the surface of the cornea;
cast a fracture of a bone;
Some of these procedures are considered to be within the scope of practice of registered nurses while others are not. For example, registered nurses who act in a scrub nurse role carry out some surgical activities below the dermis on a physician’s order (e.g., holding retractors). Registered nurses who have successfully completed additional education and work in a nurse first assist role can do surgical suturing and harvest veins on a physician’s order. Doing surgery (including incision and drainage), however, is not within the scope of practice of registered nurses. Registrants who are in doubt about whether a procedure is considered within registered nurses’ scope of practice should contact CRNBC.
An order for a Registered Nurse or Licensed Graduate Nurse to cast a fracture of a bone may only ever be given by a physician or Nurse Practitioner who is registered in British Columbia.
Registered nurses must successfully complete an
RN First Assist Program before doing surgical suturing or harvesting veins under a physician's order.