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New authority coming for RNs and NPs

posted Oct 8, 2014

The B.C. government plans to bring the Statutory Property Guardianship Regulation into force on December 1, 2014. This will permit RNs and NPs to:

  • conduct the functional component of a financial incapability assessment, and
  • provide an opinion about the adult’s capability.

This is a new authority for RNs and NPs.  Currently, only physicians are authorized to carry out and sign off on these assessments. In practice, however, RNs and NPs are currently involved in this work.
The new Regulation sets out:

  • the legal test of incapability, the responsibilities of key players and critical due process elements, and
  • a new financial incapability assessment process that involves separate functional and medical assessments followed by review of both these assessments by a health authority designate. The designate has the authority to require further assessments and additional opinions before a certificate of financial incapability is issued.

Under the Regulation, only physicians are authorized to undertake the medical assessment.

The Regulation requires that we establish standards, limits or conditions that would apply to nurses conducting these assessments. During the summer we consulted with registrants and other stakeholders to do so.

Requirements

RNs* and NPs may conduct the functional component of a financial incapability assessment if they:

  • have successfully completed the Ministry of Health course “A Guide to the Certificate of Incapability Process of the Adult Guardianship Act”, and
  • follow the Guide to the Certificate of Incapability Process of the Adult Guardianship Act.

*RNs have an additional requirement to meet prior to performing such assessments, in that they must also complete additional education related to clinical practice in this area.

Health authorities preparing for the change

Health authorities are working with the Ministry of Health to provide on-site education over the fall.

If you work in a health authority and anticipate doing these assessments, please contact your manager for further information.

Links to the online course and guidelines are expected to be available later in October.

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