Nurse practitioners can now admit patients to hospital

Nurse practitioners can now assess, treat and discharge patients

The government introduced an amendment to the Hospitals Act today, March 31, to allow nurse practitioners to admit patients to hospital. 

“Patients deserve a positive healthcare experience from the moment they access care to the moment they can return home,” said Michelle Thompson, Minister of Health and Wellness. “Permitting nurse practitioners to admit patients means timely access to care for patients, increased hospital efficiency, and improved movement of patients through their healthcare journey.”

Currently, only physicians, midwives and dentists can admit a patient to hospital. Nurse practitioners can assess, treat and discharge patients, but can’t admit them, even though they are trained and licensed to do so.

“This is good news for Nova Scotians. Amending the Hospitals Act to grant nurse practitioners the authority to admit to hospital optimizes the nurse practitioner scope of practice and will enhance access to care for patients.”
     – Sue Smith, CEO and Registrar, Nova Scotia College of Nursing 

Quick Facts:
— Nova Scotia joins Ontario, Manitoba, and British Columbia in allowing nurse practitioners to admit patients to hospital
— the Hospitals Act was last amended in 2015 to allow nurse practitioners to discharge patients from hospital
— the Homes for Special Care Act currently authorizes nurse practitioners to admit people to long-term care facilities 

Additional Resources:
Bills tabled in the legislature this spring are available at:

Source: Release

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