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Returning to practice: weighing the options

Case study about practising registration status

Living the retired life

Can a retired nurse give flu shots? 

After 40 years as a registered nurse, Marlie is enjoying her retirement. After her great send-off party last year, she changed her registration status to non-practising and bought a set of golf clubs. She hasn’t given it much thought since.

Rick, her husband, works at a big employer in the community. Over dinner, Rick mentions that his employer is planning the annual flu clinic, and that he volunteered her to give the flu shots again this year.

Marlie knows it’s not that simple—she tells Rick she needs to think about it.

What are Marlie’s options?

There are actually only two:

  1. Return to practising registration, or
  2. Tell Rick she’s not doing it.

Because she doesn’t have practising registration with CRNBC, Marlie can’t legally give vaccines. She’s not legally entitled to call herself an RN or a nurse, and if something goes wrong, she doesn’t have professional liability protection.

Before Marlie can return to practice, she’d have to do a few things.

  • She’ll need to meet quality assurance requirements. She already knows that she’ll meet the minimum practice hours requirement since she was working full-time until her retirement last year. To return to practising registration status, she’ll need to complete a self-assessment and create a professional development plan.
  • She’ll need to submit a notarized statutory declaration.
  • She’ll have to pay the $100 change status fee and the difference between practicing and non-practicing fees for the remainder of the year.

Marlie’s decision

Even though the steps won’t take long, it’s more than Marlie is willing to do for an afternoon of volunteering. That night Marlie tells Rick she can’t give the shots as he’s not married to a practicing nurse anymore. Rick thinks she’s overreacting. He says she’s only been retired for a year and everyone knows she was a good nurse. Why doesn’t she just do it?

Marlie tells Rick that she was always a professional when she was a nurse and that didn’t go away when she retired. She can recommend some nursing friends to volunteer at the flu clinic.

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