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St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

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Revised Statutes of Newfoundland 1990




1. Short title

2. Definitions

3. Corporation

4. Holding powers

5. Objects

6. Council

7. By-laws

8. Licensing and membership

9. Schools of nursing

10. Nursing school advisor

11. Certificates of competency

12. Board of Examiners

13. Register of nurses

14. Financial year

15. Fees

16. Requirements to practise

17. Right to recover fees

18. Penalties

19. Sustaining membership

20. Honourary membership

21. Revocation of registration

22. Other care givers

23. Offence

24. Offence

25. Penalty

Short title

1. This Act may be cited as the Registered Nurses Act.

RSN1970 c268 s1

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2. In this Act

(a) "association" means the Association of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland continued by this Act;

(b) "board" means the Board of Examiners appointed under section 12;

(c) "council" means the council of the association;

(d) "executive secretary" means an employee appointed by the council to carry out the duties assigned by this Act and the by-laws of the association;

(e) "member" means a person who is a member in good standing of the association;

(f) "practice" means the practice of nursing;

(g) "register" means the register referred to in section 13;

(h) "registered nurse" means a person possessed of the qualifications required by this Act, and who is authorized to offer services for the care of the sick and to give care intended for the prevention of disease and to receive remuneration, and who is a member in good standing of the association; and

(i) "registration" means the entry of a name in the register.

RSN1970 c268 s2

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3. (1) The Association of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland is continued as a corporation.

(2) The corporation consists of all nurses admitted and authorized by this Act to practise their profession in the province and all persons becoming members of the association.

RSN1970 c268 s3

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Holding powers

4. The association may acquire, hold and enjoy property, movable or immovable, by gift or legacy or otherwise and may sell, lease, hypothecate, alienate or otherwise dispose of the property.

RSN1970 c268 s5

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5. The objects of the association are

(a) to dignify the profession by maintaining and improving the ethical and professional standards of nursing education and service;

(b) to encourage its members to participate in affairs promoting the public welfare;

(c) to promote the best interests of the nurses of the province and to maintain unity among them;

(d) to encourage an attitude of mutual understanding with the nurses of other countries; and

(e) other lawful acts and things that are incidental or conducive to the attainment of the preceding objects.

RSN1970 c268 s7

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6. (1) There shall be a council of the association elected in the manner set out in the by-laws from among the members in good standing, and the council shall, subject to ratification by the association, conduct the affairs of the association between meetings of the association.

(2) The council shall appoint an executive secretary to carry out the duties assigned by this Act and by the by-laws of the association.

RSN1970 c268 s8

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7. (1) Subject to the approval of the Minister of Health, the association may make by-laws for

(a) the management of the property and affairs of the association;

(b) the maintenance of the association;

(c) the fixing and collecting of annual and other fees;

(d) the time, place and conduct of the annual and other meetings of the association;

(e) the organization of local chapters of the association;

(f) the admission, registration, dismissal, suspension and re-instatement of members; and

(g) generally, all other matters that it may consider necessary or convenient for the administration of the association and the promotion of its welfare and that of the profession.

(2) Amendments to the by-laws proposed at a general or special meeting of the association may be adopted by a majority vote providing 2 months' notice of motion has been given in writing to every member or by unanimous vote where no notice has been given.

RSN1970 c268 s9; 1986 c30 s6

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Licensing and membership

8. Upon payment of the required fee, a licence to practise the profession shall be granted to and membership in the association shall be provided for

(a) all nurses from other provinces or countries wishing reciprocal registration and presenting acceptable certificates of registration in proof of qualifications and competency equivalent to those required by this Act; and

(b) all nurses who graduate from recognized schools of nursing in this province, when they have passed the registration examinations required by this Act.

RSN1970 c268 s10

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Schools of nursing

9. The association shall recognize schools of nursing meeting the following requirements:

(a) they are operated in conjunction with general hospitals having at least 100 beds and a daily average of at least 60 patients;

(b) they are staffed by registered nurses in all executive positions of nursing responsibility; and

(c) they provide experience in medical nursing, surgical nursing, obstetrical nursing, pediatric nursing and other aspects of nursing that the association shall by by-law prescribe.

RSN1970 c268 s11

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Nursing school advisor

10. The council may appoint a school of nursing advisor whose duties shall be defined by the by-laws.

RSN1970 c268 s12

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Certificates of competency

11. (1) The credentials of all applicants for admission to schools of nursing in the province shall be evaluated by the association as provided in the by-laws and certificates of competency shall be issued to those applicants who

(a) have passed their 18th birthday before the completion of the pre-clinical period; and

(b) have successfully completed the Grade XII course, or its equivalent, as certified by the Department of Education of this province.

(2) Paragraph (1)(b) does not apply to an applicant for admission to a school of nursing in the province who completed the Grade XI course or its equivalent, as certified by the Department of Education of the province, before July 1, 1983.

RSN1970 c268 s13; 1984 c19 s1

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Board of Examiners

12. (1) The minister shall each year appoint from a panel of names prepared by the council a Board of Examiners consisting of 6 persons, the majority of whom shall be registered nurses.

(2) The board shall select the chairperson from among its membership and the executive secretary of the association shall act as secretary to the board.

(3) Where the chairperson is not present at a meeting the members of the board shall elect a chairperson from among the members present to be chairperson for that meeting.

(4) The duties of the board are

(a) to arrange for the holding of registration examinations in the spring and autumn of each year;

(b) to appoint persons actively engaged in the education of nurses as deputy examiners who shall prepare and submit to the board examination questions and who shall mark the examination papers; and

(c) to submit to the council the complete results of the examinations and to submit to each of the schools of nursing the complete results of the examination of their respective candidates and then publicly to announce the names of the successful candidates.

RSN1970 c268 s14; 1983 c76 s10

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Register of nurses

13. (1) The council shall keep a register in which shall be entered the names of the members of the association together with other records and particulars that the council requires; and those persons only whose names are entered in the register are entitled to the privileges of membership in the association.

(2) The register shall be open to inspection at the head office of the association during regular business hours free of charge.

(3) The register, or a copy or an extract of it certified by the executive secretary, shall be, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, evidence in courts in the province and before all persons that the persons whose names are entered there are members of the association in good standing.

(4) The absence of the name of a person from the register shall be, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, evidence that that person is not a member of the association.

RSN1970 c268 s15

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Financial year

14. The financial year of the association shall be from January 1 to December 31.

RSN1970 c268 s16

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15. (1) The annual licence fee to be paid by each member shall become due on January 1 in each year.

(2) Candidates for registration examinations shall pay those fees that are fixed in the by-laws.

RSN1970 c268 s17

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Requirements to practise

16. (1) Except as provided in this Act, a person shall not practise as a nurse or hold himself or herself out as a registered nurse until that person has obtained a licence and has been registered as a member of the association.

(2) The by-laws shall provide for an interim licence to enable persons to practise nursing pending the writing of registration examinations or the examination of their credentials.

(3) A person shall not practise as a nurse under an assumed name.

RSN1970 c268 s18

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Right to recover fees

17. A person does not have the right to recover fees or compensation for professional services rendered or to avail himself or herself of a right or privilege conferred by this Act unless the person was a member of the association when he or she rendered the services.

RSN1970 c268 s19

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18. A person not a member of the association in good standing who takes or uses the title Registered Nurse or the initials R.N., either alone or in combination with other words, letters or description implying that the person is registered under this Act, or is entitled to be registered under this Act, or is recognized by law as a registered nurse, is guilty of an offence and liable upon summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $50 for each offence and in default of payment to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 1 month.

RSN1970 c268 s20

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Sustaining membership

19. A member of the association who stops practising nursing in the province may become a sustaining member of the association upon giving written notice to the executive secretary of the change in his or her professional status, and the by-laws shall provide for this type of membership.

RSN1970 c268 s21

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Honourary membership

20. The by-laws shall provide for honourary membership in the association.

RSN1970 c268 s22

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Revocation of registration

21. (1) The council may, by a 2/3 majority of its members personally present at a convened meeting of the council, revoke or suspend a licence for the period that the council may in its discretion decide.

(2) Revocation or suspension may be made upon written complaint, proved to the satisfaction of the council, of

(a) dishonesty;

(b) incompetence;

(c) a habit or illness making the nurse unfit to care for the sick;

(d) conduct that does not conform to the standards of the profession or is unbecoming to a nurse;

(e) fraud or misrepresentation in the obtaining of a licence; or

(f) default of not less than 3 months in payment of the annual fee fixed by the by-laws of the association as a condition of the maintenance of membership in the association.

(3) The name of a person whose certificate is revoked or suspended shall be struck from the register, and shall not again be entered except by direction of the council.

(4) A licence shall not be revoked or suspended unless the person against whom the complaint is made has been given not less than 7 days' notice in writing of the complaint and of the time and place of hearing of the complaint by the council.

(5) The person against whom the complaint is made may appear before the council upon the hearing of the complaint either in person or by counsel.

(6) Within 6 months after the revocation or suspension of a licence, the person whose licence was revoked or suspended may appeal to a judge of the Trial Division against the decision of the council.

(7) Seven days' notice in writing of the appeal shall be given to the council and the procedure on the appeal shall be as directed by the judge before whom it comes for hearing.

(8) The decision of the judge shall be final and conclusive and shall immediately be acted upon by the council.

RSN1970 c268 s23; 1974 No57 Sch C;
1986 c42 Sch A

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Other care givers

22. This Act shall not be interpreted as forbidding

(a) a legally qualified nurse of another province or country whose engagement requires him or her to accompany and care for a patient temporarily living in this province, during the period of the engagement, where the nurse does not hold himself or herself out as a nurse licensed to practise in the province;

(b) a house maid or employee, companion, nursery maid or other domestic helper in regular or temporary services or simply in emergency cases to give care to the sick where the person is employed in the capacity of house maid, employee, companion, nursery maid or domestic helper;

(c) anyone caring for members of his or her family;

(d) a category of auxiliaries, nursing assistants, ward aides, midwives, practical nurses, or orderlies to care for the sick for pay;

(e) student candidates in recognized schools of nursing to care for the sick; and

(f) physicians, surgeons or dental surgeons to practise their respective professions and to attend their patients.

RSN1970 c268 s24

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23. A person who contravenes subsection 16(1) or (3) is guilty of an offence.

RSN1970 c268 s25

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24. A person who obtains or attempts to obtain a licence by making a misrepresentation or declaration and a person who helps in the making of the misrepresentation or declaration is guilty of an offence.

RSN1970 c268 s26

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25. A person guilty of an offence is, where no other penalty is provided in this Act, liable on summary conviction to a fine of not more than $100.

RSN1970 c268 s27

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