Nurses groups concerned over plan to expand RPN duties
TORONTO — Two groups representing Ontario nurses are raising concerns about their regulatory body’s decision to expand the scope of practice for registered practical nurses in the province.
The Registered Nurses Association
of Ontario and the Ontario Nurses Association are now calling on the provincial government to delay the change until after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) made a shocking and stunning decision approving a regulation change for the
Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) scope of practice … that will seriously jeopardize the safety of the public,” the two groups said in a statement.
The change, the groups said, disregards the difference in educational requirements for the two different types of nursing practices and allows registered practical nurses to carry out duties currently reserved for registered nurses.
The groups have launched a petition asking the provincial government to halt the move for now. The health and longterm-care ministries did not immediately provide comment.
The College of Nurses also did not immediately respond to request for comment.
Meanwhile, the Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario said it believes its members, if they have the appropriate knowledge, should be allowed to work within the expanded scope of practice.