Practice Information

Frequently Asked Practice Questions

General | RN & LPN | Clinical Nurse Specialist | Nurse Practitioner

General

  1. What types of nursing professions are in New York State?

    Answer: The 4 types of New York nursing professions are:
    • Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs)
    • Registered Professional Nurses (RNs)
    • Nurse Practitioners (NPs). New York State certifies NPs to practice in one or more of the following specialty areas: Adult Health; Family Health; Gerontology; Neonatology; Obstetrics; Oncology; Pediatrics, Perinatology; Psychiatry; School Health; Women’s Health; Holistic Care; and Palliative care.
    • Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNSs). New York State certifies CNSs to practice in one or more of the following specialty areas: Adult Health; Pediatrics; Psychiatric/Mental Health; and Oncology.

    *In New York, midwifery is not considered a nursing profession. Midwifery is a separately licensed profession.

  2. The scopes of practice for the registered professional nurse, licensed practical nurse, clinical nurse specialist and nurse practitioner professions are defined in New York Law. Does that mean that I can do everything that falls within the legal scope of the practice of my nursing profession?

    Answer: A nurse may provide nursing services allowed by New York law only if the nurse is personally competent to deliver the services. You are not legally allowed to provide nursing services that you are not personally competent to perform, even if New York law generally allows a nurse to provide the service. As a licensed professional, it is your responsibility to provide care competently, and as authorized by New York law. If you don’t, you could be charged with professional misconduct.

  3. Can an unlicensed person, such as a medical technologist, use the title "nurse" or be referred to as "the nurse" in New York State?

    Answer: No. New York law restricts the use of the title “nurse” to persons who are licensed by the New York State Education Department as an RN, LPN, CNS or NP. Graduates of certain RN or LPN education programs may also use the title of “graduate nurse” or graduate practical nurse” if they have applied for a New York State RN or LPN license and a limited permit.

  4. Do I have to be registered and licensed as a nurse with the New York State Education Department (SED) in order to practice as a nurse in New York?

    Answer: Yes. You must be licensed and registered by SED as a LPN in order to practice as an LPN. You must be licensed and registered by SED as a RN in order to practice as an RN. In order to practice as a nurse practitioner, you must be licensed and registered by SED as a RN and certified and registered by SED as a nurse practitioner. In order to practice as a clinical nurse specialist, you must be licensed and registered by SED as a RN and certified and registered by SED as a clinical nurse specialist.

  5. Must I wear an identification badge while I provide nursing care in a healthcare setting?

    Answer: Yes. You are legally required to wear an identification badge indicating your name and your professional title if you are practicing at a hospital, clinic, group practice or other establishment offering health services to the public.

  6. Can a business venture that is not licensed to provide medical or nursing care hire a registered professional nurse, licensed practical nurse, clinical nurse specialist or nurse practitioner to provide nursing services?

    Answer: No. In New York, it is illegal for business ventures that are not specifically authorized by New York Law to provide medical or nursing care (i.e., salons or nutritional supplement stores) may not legally hire licensed nurses to provide nursing services in New York State.

  7. How long must a licensed nurse with a private practice retain patient records?

    Answer: All licensed healthcare practitioners with private practices must retain patient records for at least six years. Some records must be retained for even longer periods of time. Obstetrical records and records of minor patients must be retained for at least six years, and until one year after the minor patient reaches the age of 21 years. It is unprofessional conduct to fail to maintain a record for each patient, which accurately reflects the evaluation and treatment of the patient. See, 8 NYCRR §29.2(3).

  8. Can a licensed practical nurse (LPN), registered professional nurse (RN) or clinical nurse specialist (CNS) perform services that constitute the practice of medicine (i.e., spinal taps) if delegated by a physician?

    Answer: No. In New York, a licensed professional such as a physician, may not delegate tasks that fall exclusively within that practitioner's scope of practice to another licensed professional, such as an RN, LPN or CNS, who does not have that task within her/his licensed scope of practice.

  9. What options are available to a nurse if a co-worker is suspected of diverting controlled substances or appears to be impaired while providing care to patients?

    Answer: Several options are available. You can share your concerns with your clinical supervisor or report your observations to the New York State Department of Health’s Bureau of Controlled Substances at 518-402-0707. If your co-worker is a nurse, you may also assist the nurse to contact; (1) the New York State Nurses Association's Statewide Peer Assistance for Nurses (SPAN) program by phone 518-782-9400 ext. 304, or electronically through their Web site at www.nysna.org/programs/span/home.htm; or, (2) the New York State Education Department's Professional Assistance Program (PAP) at 518-485-9353.

  10. If an insurance company or managed care organization refuses to pay for a nursing service, does it mean that it is not within my legal scope of practice to perform the service?

    Answer: Insurance companies, managed care organizations and other health care payors do not define the legal scope of practice of nurses. However, they may determine which nursing services they will pay for and how much they will pay. The State Board for Nursing does not have the authority to resolve fee disputes between nurses and managed care organizations, insurance companies or other payors.

  11. If I am unsure about whether something falls within my legal scope of practice, how can I find out?

    Answer: Please review the practice guidance information available on this website. You may also use the “Find Answers” button at the top of this webpage. If the information that you seek is not on this website, you may seek guidance from the Nursing Board office by EMAIL at: nursebd@mail.nysed.gov, or by telephone at 518-473-3817 ext. 120. You may also send a letter with you question to: New York State Education Department, 89 Washington Avenue-Education Building, State Board for Nursing, Second Floor, West Wing, Albany, New York, 12234.

RN & LPN

  1. What services can a licensed practical nurse (LPN) provide?

    Answer: According to New York State Education Law §6902, LPNs perform tasks and responsibilities within the framework of case finding, health teaching, health counseling and provide supportive and restorative care under the direction of a registered professional nurse (RN), clinical nurse specialist, physician, nurse practitioner, licensed midwife, physician assistant, specialist assistant, dentist or podiatrist. An LPN typically provides the following types services under the direction of an RN or other qualified practitioner (assuming that the LPN is personally competent to do so):
    • Administers most types of medications and immunizations and blood (with additional training).
    • Provides bedside nursing care in hospitals and residential health care facilities.
    • Observes, measures, records, and reports data relating to a patient’s health status.
    • Performs clinical procedures, such as urinary catheterizations, oral or tracheal suctioning, sterile dressing changes, and starting a peripheral IV (with additional training).
    • Supervises unlicensed care staff, such as certified nurse aides (CNAs) in nursing homes.
    • Identifies patient goals for consideration by the RN for possible inclusion in a patient’s care plan.

    New York law does not allow LPNs to determine nursing diagnoses, develop or change nursing care plans, perform triage, or perform any service that the LPN is not personally competent to perform. There are many services not listed here that LPNs may or may not be allowed to perform. There are many New York laws and regulations that impact the practice of LPNs. To view some of these laws and regulations, click on "Laws Rules & Regulations" on the left side of the Nursing Homepage.

  2. What services can a registered professional nurse (RN) provide?

    Answer: According to New York State Education Law §6902, RNs diagnose and treat human responses to actual or potential health problems through such services as case finding, health teaching, health counseling and providing care supportive to or restorative of life and well-being. RNs also execute medical regimens prescribed by a licensed physician, dentist, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, specialist assistant, midwife or podiatrist in accordance with New York State Education Department regulations. A nursing regimen must be consistent with any existing medical regimen. RNs may practice independently, in collaboration with other health care practitioners, or under the supervision of a physician, nurse practitioner, midwife, dentist, podiatrist clinical nurse specialist or another RN. An RN typically provides the following types of services (assuming that the RN is personally competent to do so):
    • Performs physical exams and patient assessments to identify and address health problems and unmet patient care needs.
    • Develops comprehensive nursing care plans and performs nursing interventions (i.e., bereavement counseling, ostomy care).
    • Performs medical treatments (i.e., medication administration, wound care) as prescribed or by a physician, dentist, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, specialist assistant, midwife or podiatrist.
    • Provides health teaching and emotional support to help patients and their families adjust to or manage serious or chronic illnesses or injuries.
    • Supervises care delivered by other health care personnel, such as licensed practical nurses and home health aides.
    • Works with physicians, and other health care practitioners to ensure that patients receive appropriate, timely, well-coordinated care.
    • Conducts health screenings to detect and address signs of early disease or risk factors for disease and then provide health teaching or make referrals, as appropriate.

    RNs make nursing assessments and nursing diagnoses, and also plan, implement and evaluate nursing care. RNs do not make medical diagnoses or prescribe medical treatments or drugs. There are many New York laws and regulations that impact the practice of RNs. To view some of these laws and regulations, click on “Laws Rules & Regulations” on the left side of the Nursing Homepage.

  3. Can a graduate of a nursing school practice nursing before being licensed and registered to practice nursing in New York?

    Answer: In some cases, yes. The New York State Education Department (SED) issues limited permits RN or LPN license applicants who have met all legal requirements to be licensed and registered to practice nursing except for taking the National Council Licensure Examinations (NCLEX–RN or NCLEX–PN). An LPN license applicant with a limited permit is a graduate practical nurse (GPN). An RN license applicant with a limited permit is graduate nurse (GN). This title must be displayed on the GPN’s or GN’s identification badge and must also be used when signing patient records.

  4. What practice restrictions apply to graduate practical nurses (GPNs) and graduate nurses (GNs)?

    Answer: GPNs and GNs must practice at all times under the supervision of a registered professional nurse (RN) in a hospital setting. The supervising RN must be on the patient care unit at all times when professional services are being rendered by the GPN or GN. The supervising RN must provide an appropriate degree of supervision, which is determined by the care needs of the patients and the skill and experience of the GPN or GN and other relevant factors.

  5. Can a registered professional nurse (RN) or licensed practical nurse (LPN) work in a position that is below his/her level of licensure?

    Answer: Yes. A licensed nurse may work in a position that he/she has the training to do and that is within his/her scope of practice. RNs have the training to perform LPN, Certified Nurses Aid and Home Care Aid functions and therefore could accept a work identified for these levels. An LPN has the training to perform Certified Nurses Aid and Home Care Aid functions, and could accept work identified for either of these positions. However, the nurse that does so would still be required to act prudently based on his/her educational preparation and would be held to that standard. In addition, the nurse cannot refer to themselves as an "LPN" or "Certified Nurse Aid" unless it is, in fact, true.

  6. Can a registered professional nurse (RN) be supervised by an unlicensed person or another licensed health care practitioner?

    Answer: Only a licensed physician, nurse practitioner, midwife, podiatrist, dentist, clinical nurse specialist or an RN may supervise the nursing practice of an RN. All other licensed professionals (including licensed practical nurses) are not legally allowed to supervise the professional nursing practice of an RN. They could, however, supervise non-clinical matters such as attendance, dress code, etc.

  7. Can a licensed practical nurse (LPN) be supervised by an unlicensed person or another licensed health care practitioner?

    Answer: Only a licensed physician, nurse practitioner, midwife, podiatrist, dentist, physician assistant, specialist assistant, clinical nurse specialist or registered professional nurse may direct the nursing practice of an LPN. Although no other licensed professionals or individuals are legally authorized to supervise the professional nursing practice of an LPN, they could supervise non-clinical matters such as attendance, dress code, use of paid and unpaid leave.

  8. Can a licensed practical nurse (LPN) practice independently?

    Answer: No. New York State Education Law § 6902 requires LPNs to practice under the direction of a registered professional nurse, clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioner, physician, dentist, physician assistant, specialist assistant, podiatrist, or midwife (“directing practitioner”). The directing practitioner must provide an appropriate degree of direction to the LPN, which is determined by the care needs of the patients and the skill and ability of the LPN. In most cases, the directing practitioner must be on premises when LPNs provide nursing care. The directing practitioner does not necessarily have to be on premises to direct an LPN where: (1) the LPN has demonstrated competence to meet the nursing care needs of the LPN’s patients; (2) the LPN’s patients are highly unlikely to require personal intervention by the directing practitioner; and (3) the directing practitioner is available to direct the LPN by telephone and can personally intervene within 15 minutes to ensure timely and appropriate care. The directing practitioner remains ultimately responsible for providing appropriate direction by phone or in person to ensure patient or client safety.

    LPNs must practice under the direction of a directing practitioner even if the LPN has been issued an "Independent Medicaid Provider Number" by the New York State Department of Health. The "Independent Medicaid Provider Number" merely allows the LPN to be paid for Medicaid services provided by the LPN; it doesn’t authorize the LPN to practice independently.

  9. Can a licensed practical nurse (LPN) be a charge nurse or clinical supervisor in a nursing home or outpatient clinic?

    Answer: An LPN may supervise another LPN if: (1) the services delegated are within both LPN’s legal scope of practice and personal competency; and (2) both LPNs practice under the continuous direction of a registered professional nurse (RN), clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioner or physician. An LPN cannot legally “direct” the practice of other LPNs in lieu of an RN or other qualified practitioner. LPNs are not legally allowed to supervise RNs or other licensed health care professionals. New York law does not authorize LPNs to determine nursing diagnoses, or develop nursing care plans. To the extent that charge nurse or supervisor responsibilities are inconsistent with the above mentioned legal restrictions, LPNs accepting such positions could have a disciplinary charge against their license for working beyond their lawful scope of practice.

  10. Can a registered professional nurse (RN) administer medications or tests without a patient specific order from a prescriber (i.e., physician or nurse practitioner)?

    Answer: Not usually. Nurses are legally required to administer medications and tests pursuant to patient-specific orders, except for certain immunizations, anaphylaxis treatments, purified protein derivative (PPD) tests, Hepatitis C tests and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) tests, which may be provided pursuant to non-patient specific orders issued by a nurse practitioner or physician. For more information concerning New York Laws that govern non-patient specific orders and protocols, see Education Law §6909 and 8 NYCRR §64.7.


Clinical Nurse Specialist

  1. What is a clinical nurse specialist? What services can a clinical nurse specialist provide?

    Answer: In New York State, a clinical nurse specialist is a registered professional nurse who has completed advanced education (usually a master’s or doctorate degree) in a nursing clinical practice specialty and is certified by the New York State Education Department (SED) as a "Clinical Nurse Specialist" or "CNS".

    Clinical nurse specialists provide expert, highly skilled nursing services to benefit patients with complex health care needs. In addition to providing, coordinating and supervising care, CNSs evaluate the quality and effectiveness of patient care. They provide clinical consultation to other health care personnel. CNSs may be involved in health care management, health systems improvement, clinical research and health care policy development.

    Clinical nurse specialists do not determine medical diagnoses and do not prescribe or order medical treatments or diagnostic tests. For example, a clinical nurse specialist does not prescribe medications or order CT scans. There are many laws that govern clinical nurse specialist practice. To view some of these laws and regulations, click on "Laws Rules & Regulations" on the left side of the Nursing Homepage.

  2. Please describe the specialty areas in which the New York State Education Department (SED) issues clinical nurse specialist certifications.

    Answer: SED issues clinical nurse specialist certifications in the following specialty areas: Adult Health; Pediatrics; Psychiatric/Mental Health; and, Oncology.
    • Clinical Nurse Specialist (Adult Health): typically coordinates and provides supportive and preventative nursing services for adult patients and their families (from young adult through geriatric populations) in a variety of health care settings.
    • Clinical Nurse Specialist (Pediatrics): typically coordinates and provides supportive and preventative nursing services for patients (from birth through about age 21) and their families in a variety of health care settings.
    • Clinical Nurse Specialist (Psychiatric/Mental Health): typically coordinates and provides supportive and preventative mental health nursing services for patients of all ages and their families in a variety of health care settings.
    • Clinical Nurse Specialist (Oncology): typically coordinates and provides supportive and preventative oncologic nursing services for patients of all ages and their families in a variety of health care settings.

Nurse Practitioner

  1. What is a nurse practitioner? What services can a nurse practitioner provide?

    Answer: In New York State, a nurse practitioner is a registered professional nurse who has completed advanced nursing education (usually a master’s or doctorate degree) in a nurse practitioner specialty area and is certified by the New York State Education Department ("SED") as a "Nurse Practitioner" or "NP". SED certifies nurse practitioners to practice in the following specialty practice areas: Adult Health; Family Health; Gerontology; Neonatology; Obstetrics; Oncology; Pediatrics, Perinatology; Psychiatry; School Health; Women’s Health; Holistic Care; and Palliative Care. Nurse Practitioners manage the medical and nursing care to their patients. According to New York State Education Law §6902, a nurse practitioner diagnoses illnesses and physical conditions and performs therapeutic and corrective measures within a specialty area of practice in which the nurse practitioner is certified by SED. There are many New York laws and regulations that impact on the practice of nurse practitioners. To view some of these laws and regulations, click on "Laws Rules & Regulations" on the left side of the Nursing Homepage.

  2. Please describe the "specialty practice areas" in which the New York State Education Department (SED) issues nurse practitioner certifications.

    Answer: SED issues nurse practitioner certifications in the following specialty areas: Adult Health; Family Health; Gerontology; Neonatology; Obstetrics; Oncology; Pediatrics, Perinatology; Psychiatry; School Health; Women’s Health; Holistic Care; and Palliative Care.

    Nurse Practitioner (Acute Care): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of acutely ill patients in a variety of hospital and ambulatory care settings.

    Nurse Practitioner (Adult Health): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of adults (young adults from about age 18 to the very elderly). Adult nurse practitioners may provide primary care or acute care; they may address acute or chronic health problems or provide preventive or supportive care.

    Nurse Practitioner (College Health): addresses the physical and mental health needs of adolescent and adult populations in college settings.

    Nurse Practitioner (Community Health): provides primary care services to individuals in community settings, and engages in population based health planning for communities.

    Nurse Practitioner (Family Health): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of families and individuals across the life span. Family nurse practitioners usually provide primary care but may also provide acute care; they may address acute or chronic health problems or provide preventive or supportive care. Family Nurse Practitioners practice in a variety of settings, including schools, homes, work places, hospitals, clinics and primary care health practices.

    Nurse Practitioner (Gerontology): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of older adults. Gerontology Nurse Practitioners may provide primary care or acute care; they may address acute or chronic health problems or provide preventive or supportive care.

    Nurse Practitioner (Holistic Care): provides care that encompasses the body, emotion, mind and spirit, focusing on personal development and self-healing.

    Nurse Practitioner (Neonatology): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of newborns and infants up to 1 year of age and provides support services to new parents.

    Nurse Practitioner (Obstetrics and Gynecology): provides reproductive health care to women and female adolescents. Obstetrics and Gynecology nurse practitioners may provide primary care or acute care; they may address acute or chronic health problems or provide preventive or supportive care. Some Obstetrics and Gynecology nurse practitioners sub-specialize in fields such as Labor & Delivery.

    Nurse Practitioner (Oncology): diagnoses and treats and manages oncology related care for patients with cancer, and counsels, educates and provides support to their families.

    Nurse Practitioner (Palliative Care): provides care to improve the quality of life of individuals with chronic, debilitating and life limiting illnesses and their families. Palliative care nurse practitioners typically treat pain and other distressing symptoms as well as address other physical, psychosocial and spiritual needs of patients and families.

    Nurse Practitioner (Pediatrics): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of infant, children, adolescents and young adults (infants, children and adolescents up to about age 21). Pediatric nurse practitioners provide primary care and acute care; they address acute or chronic health problems and provide preventive and supportive care.

    Nurse Practitioner (Perinatology): promotes quality care across the spectrum of birth experiences, ranging from a physiologic approach to birth that minimizes unnecessary intervention to coordinating treatment plans for conditions typically associated with high-risk pregnancies. They also work with new parents with breast feeding and parenting.

    Nurse Practitioner (Psychiatry): diagnoses and treats psychiatric disorders and manages other acute and chronic mental health problems of adults and children. They may provide primary mental health care services or acute mental health services (i.e., triage, crisis intervention services).

    Nurse Practitioner (School Health): address the health care needs of students in school settings. School health nurse practitioners may develop care plans to be implemented in school settings, train school staff to help students with health issues, and provide counseling and health education to students and their families.

    Nurse Practitioner (Women’s Health): diagnoses, treats and manages the care of women and female adolescents. Women’s health nurse practitioners may provide primary care or acute care; they may address acute or chronic health problems or provide preventive or supportive care. Women’s Health nurse practitioners may also screen, diagnose and treat sexually transmitted diseases in men and male adolescents.

  3. Does New York State Education Law require physicians to supervise nurse practitioners (NPs) or co-sign their charts or records?

    Answer: No. New York State Education Law holds nurse practitioners independently responsible for the care of their patients and does not require a physician to supervise the nurse practitioner or co-sign any of the nurse practitioner’s records or charts.

  4. Are nurse practitioners required to “collaborate” with a physician in order to practice?

    Answer: New York State Education Law requires all nurse practitioners to practice in accordance with written practice protocols and a written practice agreement with a collaborating physician, unless the nurse practitioner practices and has collaborative relationships as allowed by a new law, the Nurse Practitioners Modernization Act. Starting on January 1, 2015, this law will allow a nurse practitioner with more than 3600 hours of qualifying nurse practitioner practice experience can opt to:
    • continue to practice pursuant to a written practice protocols and a written practice agreement with a collaborating physician; or,
    • practice and have collaborative relationships with one or more qualified physicians or New York State Health Department licensed health care facility (i.e., hospital, nursing home, ambulatory surgery center, or diagnostic and treatment center).

  5. What are "collaborative relationships"?

    Answer: According to New York State Education Law, "collaborative relationships" are when a nurse practitioner communicates by phone, in person, in writing or electronically with one or more physicians qualified to collaborate in the specialty involved, or in the case of a Health Department licensed hospital, nursing home or diagnostic and treatment center, communicates with a physician qualified to collaborate in specialty involved who has privileges at such health care facility for the purpose of exchanging information in order to provide comprehensive care or to make referrals, as necessary.

  6. What is the difference between a nurse practitioner (NP) who is practicing pursuant to "a written practice agreement" and an NP practicing and having "collaborative relationships"?

    Answer: The chart below describes the major differences.

    Practice Requirements for New York State Certified Nurse Practitioners (“NPs”)
    Criteria for Collaboration Education Law Requirements for Practicing Pursuant to a Written Practice Agreement and Written Practice Protocols Education Law Requirements for Collaborative Relationships (effective 1/1/2015)
    Nurse Practitioner (NP) Qualifications All NPs must practice in accordance with written practice protocols and a written practice agreement with a collaborating physician, unless they practice and have collaborative relationships (as described in the next column). In order for an NP to practice and have collaborative relationships, the NP must have more than 3,600 hours experience practicing as a licensed or certified NP pursuant to the laws of New York or another state or practicing as an NP while employed by the US veteran’s administration, the US armed forces or the US public health service.
    Qualifications of Collaborator(s) A New York State licensed and registered physician must be qualified to collaborate in the NP’s specialty area of practice. The physician must enter into a written practice agreement with the NP. The physician cannot enter into written practice agreements with more than 4 NPs who are not located on the same physical premises as the physician.
    1. One or more New York State licensed and registered physicians who must be qualified to collaborate in the specialty involved. -or-
    2. A health care facility that:
      1. is licensed by the New York State Department of Health as a hospital, nursing home, diagnostic and treatment center, extension clinic or ambulatory surgery center; and,
      2. provides services through New York State licensed and registered physicians who are qualified to collaborate in the specialty involved and who have professional privileges at the health care facility.
    Nature of Collaboration Contractual - The NP practices in accordance with a written practice agreement with a collaborating physician. Communication - The NP practices independently and must communicate with a collaborating physician in order to provide comprehensive care or to make referrals, as necessary. The NP is not required to have a written agreement with a physician or a hospital.
    Written Practice Protocols The NP must practice in accordance with written practice protocols that reflect current nursing and medical practice in the specialty area in which the NP is certified. The written practice protocols must be acceptable to the New York State Education Department. The NP is NOT required to practice in accordance with written practice protocols.
    Chart Review by Collaborating Physician A collaborating physician must review an NP’s charts at least once every 3 months, or more often, as warranted. Not required.
    Resolving Clinical Differences The written practice agreement between the NP and physician must include provisions for the resolution of matters of diagnosis and treatment. If the agreement lacks such a provision, then the collaborating physician’s clinical recommendation prevails. The collaborating physician’s clinical opinion prevails.
    Required Documentation The NP must keep a copy of his or her written practice agreement and written practice protocols at his or her practice setting and must make them available to the New York State Education Department for inspection. The NP must maintain a copy of a "Collaborative Relationships Attestation Form" and other documentation supporting collaborative relationships and must them available to the New York State Education Department for inspection.

  7. Can a nurse practitioner (NP) diagnose illnesses and prescribe treatments for all persons?

    Answer: The New York State Education Department (SED) certifies each NP to practice one or more specialty areas. The NP may diagnose illnesses and prescribe treatment for patients only within the specialty practice area(s) for which the NP is certified by SED. The NP must also be personally competent to provide the professional service.

  8. Is there a limitation on the medications that a nurse practitioner (NP) may prescribe under a DEA number?

    Answer: New York State Education Law authorizes each NP to prescribe controlled substances (from Schedules II through IV) for patients only within the specialty area of practice for which the NP is certified by the New York State Education Department. In addition, federal law appears to prohibit NPs from prescribing Suboxone for treating drug dependence.

  9. Can a Geriatric Nurse Practitioner take a job as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner if s/he has years of pediatric nursing experience as a registered professional nurse?

    Answer: No. The nurse practitioner must be certified by the New York State Education Department to practice in the specialty area of Pediatrics in order to practice as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner.

  10. Can a nurse practitioner (NP) who has a written practice agreement with a collaborating physician continue working if the collaborator dies?

    Answer: When the collaborating physician dies, the written practice agreement signed by the NP and physician is no longer valid. In order to continue practicing, the NP should enter into a written practice agreement with another collaborating physician or practice and have collaborative relationships if the NP is legally allowed to do so.

  11. Can a nurse practitioner (NP) who has a written practice agreement with a collaborating physician continue to work while the collaborating physician is on vacation or out due to a prolonged illness?

    Answer: Yes. The collaborating physician can designate a resource person to be available to the NP, as needed, during the physician’s absence. For prolonged absences, it is preferred if the resource person is identified in the written practice agreement.
Last Updated: December 31, 2014