More barriers to NP practice removed

July / August 2017   Comments

Two more legislative barriers to nurse practitioner practice have been removed through a budget implementation act.

As reported in the May/June issue of Canadian Nurse, the federal government removed one of the legislative barriers to NP practice in late March with the release of its 2017 budget. The Income Tax Act was amended to allow NPs to sign the Disability Tax Credit Certificate.

As the editorial team was preparing that issue for print in mid-April, the Liberal government introduced Bill C-44 to implement various measures in the budget, including proposed changes to the Employment Insurance Act and the Canada Labour Code. These changes affect forms necessary for Canadians to apply for maternity and parental benefits, compassionate care benefits, special benefits for parents of critically ill children and sick leave.

“The changes outlined in Bill C-44 ensure the sustainability of our health-care system by permitting health-care professionals to treat patients to the full extent of their regulated qualifications,” CNA president Barb Shellian said. “In the end, it will cut red tape and allow Canadians to receive better care and better value for their hard-earned tax dollars.”

CNA identified 34 federal acts, regulations, policies, and forms that list physicians as the only health-care providers allowed to provide care, exams, certification, assessments or professional opinions. CNA and the Canadian Association of Advanced Practice Nurses have advocated for making minor amendments to these pieces of legislation to include NPs.

More than 4,500 NPs practise in Canada, providing care for more than three million people, including those living in rural, remote and Indigenous communities.

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