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Hearing Planned for Proposal Rule Changes for Licensed Nurses

September 1, 2010

OLYMPIA - New draft rules aimed at promoting patient safety by requiring nurses to show continuing competence and education are the subject of a public hearing to gather comments. The state nursing commission says the proposed requirements would enhance the nursing profession by helping nurses stay current on the knowledge and skills of their practice.

A hearing is scheduled for this discussion on September 10 in Tumwater. The Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission recognizes the public expects nurses to practice using safe and competent skill and current knowledge throughout their career.

The commission licenses about 100,000 nurses in Washington. The proposed rules include components of active practice, continuing education, and self-assessment and reflection. Nurses will be required to attest to this every three years with their renewal. They also may be subject to a random audit under the draft rules.

The commission will hold the rules hearing at the Department of Health's Point Plaza East building in Tumwater at 9 a.m. This is an open public hearing. Public testimony will be accepted at that time. The public can also provide comments to the nursing commission (https://fortress.wa.gov/doh/policyreview) on the Department of Health website.

More information on the proposed rules and rules hearing is also on the agency's website (www.doh.wa.gov/hsqa/Professions/Nursing/RulesInProgress.htm).

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