Requires registered professional nurses to attain a baccalaureate degree in nursing within ten years of their initial licensure; provides exemptions for those currently licensed or enrolled in nursing programs.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to the educational preparation for practice of professional nursing
PURPOSE: To expand the educational preparation of registered professional nurses to require that a baccalaureate degree be obtained within ten years after initial licensure while maintaining the multiple entry points into the profession.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1 outlines the legislative intent of the bill.
Section 2 amends subdivision 2 of section 6905 of the education law in several key respects. First, this section would require that in order to continue to maintain registration as a professional nurse in New York state, such person must attain a baccalaureate degree in nursing within ten (10) years of initial licensure. Second, this section would allow the State Education Department to issue a conditional registration to a licensee who fails to complete the baccalaureate degree but who agrees to meet the additional requirements within a year. Furthermore, the section outlines the additional fee for such conditional registration, as well as provides for a one year conditional registration which may be extended, with the payment of a fee, for no more than one additional year. Finally, this section calls for disciplinary proceedings to be taken against any licensee who is notified of the denial of a registration for failure to complete the additional educational requirements and who practices as a registered professional nurse without such registration
Section 3 outlines that the provisions of this act shall not apply to: (1) any student entering a generic baccalaureate program preparing registered professional nurses after the effective of this act; (2) any student currently enrolled in, or having an application pending in, a program preparing registered nurses as of the effective date of this act; and (3) any person already licensed as a registered professional nurse or any unlicensed graduate professional who is eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination as of the effective date of this act.
Section 4 provides the effective date
JUSTIFICATION: In December 2003, the New York State Board of Nursing unanimously passed a motion recommending that statutory change be sought requiring future licensed registered nurses to attain a baccalaureate degree in nursing within ten years after initial licensure to practice in New York, More recently, the National Advisory Council on Nursing Education and Practice ("NACNEP") recommended that by 2010, two-thirds of nurses should hold baccalaureate or higher degrees. This position was based on NACNEP's analysis of evolving needs associated with patient care and public protection. Specifically, shorter lengths of stays, higher patient acuity, and more sophisticated technologies and procedures are increasing the complexity of patient care, and because of this, are placing significantly greater demands on the competencies of nurses.
This bill is not anticipated to reduce the supply of nurses in New York. To the contrary, prospective nurses are currently in such supply that a 2004 study at the Center for Health Workforce Studies at SUNY Albany showed that over 2,000 qualified students were denied admission to nursing programs. As the bill lays out, those who are already nurses, those who are currently enrolled in nursing programs, and those with admissions pending to nursing programs are exempt from this change. Importantly, this bill will allow continuation of entry at the associate degree level where many nurses begin their educational careers.
In an effort to facilitate the implementation of additional educational requirements for registered professional nurses, the New York State Associate Degree Nursing Council and the Council of Deans of Nursing, Senior Colleges and Universities of New York ("CDNSCUNY") have actively collaborated to standardize requirements between the associate and baccalaureate degree levels. In December 2004, CDNSCUNY adopted the position that registered nurses prepared in New York State associate degree nursing programs applying to baccalaureate degree programs would be granted 30 nursing credits in addition to liberal arts and sciences credits that could be applied to the 120 credits needed for a baccalaureate degree.
By requiring the baccalaureate degree for continued registration as a professional nurse, this bill seeks to be responsive to meet the increasingly complex health care needs of the residents of New York.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2013 - S. 658 (Stavisky) Higher Education Committee; Enacting clause stricken. 2011/2012 - S. 2553-A (Alesi) Higher Education Committee. 2009/2010 - S. 1074 (Alesi) Higher Education Committee. 2007/2008 - S. 294 (Alesi) Higher Education Committee. 2005/2006 - S 5056-A (Alesi) Higher Education Committee.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the State.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately and the commissioner is authorized to promulgate any rule or regulation necessary to implement the provisions of this act.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5924 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE August 7, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. FLANAGAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Rules AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to the educational prepa- ration for practice of professional nursing THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The legislature hereby finds and declares that with the increasing complexity of the American healthcare system and rapidly expanding technology, the educational preparation of the registered professional nurse must be expanded. The nurse of the future must be prepared to partner with multiple disciplines as a collaborator and manager of the complex patient care journey. Shorter lengths of stays, higher patient acuity, and more sophisticated technologies and proce- dures are increasing the complexity of patient care - which in turn places great demands on nursing competencies. Other countries are responding to these changes by requiring the baccalaureate degree as an entry requirement for nursing licensure while other professions are demanding master and doctoral degrees as their entry point. Several recent research studies clearly demonstrate the added value of addi- tional education in relation to improved patient outcomes; one study demonstrates that each ten percent increase in the number of baccalau- reate prepared nurses results in a five percent decrease in surgical patient deaths. Therefore, the legislature finds that expanding the educational requirements for the profession of nursing, while maintain- ing the multiple entry points into the profession, is needed. This legislation affects future nurses graduating from associate degree or diploma nursing programs who would be required to obtain a baccalaureate in nursing within ten years of initial licensure. All current nurses licensed in New York and students in programs preparing for registered professional nursing are to be exempt from the new requirement. This legislation is mirrored after the progressive education requirement forEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD02884-01-3 S. 5924 2
teachers in New York state. Numerous regulatory and accrediting bodies have recommended this change as a means to address sophisticated patient care needs resulting from shorter lengths of stay, higher acuity and more sophisticated interventions. This proposal is the result of a grow- ing body of research evidence that additional education results in better patient outcomes. Therefore by requiring the baccalaureate degree for continued registration as a registered professional nurse this legislation seeks to be responsive to meet the increasingly complex health care needs of the residents of New York state. S 2. Subdivision 2 of section 6905 of the education law, as amended by chapter 994 of the laws of 1971 and such section as renumbered by chap- ter 50 of the laws of 1972, is amended to read as follows: (2) Education: have received an education, and a diploma or degree in professional nursing, in accordance with the commissioner's regulations, AND IN ORDER TO CONTINUE TO MAINTAIN REGISTRATION AS A REGISTERED PROFESSIONAL NURSE IN NEW YORK STATE, HAVE ATTAINED A BACCALAUREATE DEGREE IN NURSING WITHIN TEN YEARS OF INITIAL LICENSURE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE COMMISSIONER'S REGULATIONS. THE DEPARTMENT, IN ITS DISCRETION, MAY ISSUE A CONDITIONAL REGISTRATION TO A LICENSEE WHO FAILS TO COMPLETE THE BACCALAUREATE DEGREE BUT WHO AGREES TO MEET THE ADDITIONAL REQUIRE- MENT WITHIN ONE YEAR. THE FEE FOR SUCH A CONDITIONAL REGISTRATION SHALL BE THE SAME AS, AND IN ADDITION TO, THE FEE FOR THE TRIENNIAL REGISTRA- TION. THE DURATION OF SUCH CONDITIONAL REGISTRATION SHALL BE FOR ONE YEAR AND MAY BE EXTENDED, WITH THE PAYMENT OF A FEE, FOR NO MORE THAN ONE ADDITIONAL YEAR. ANY LICENSEE WHO IS NOTIFIED OF THE DENIAL OF A REGISTRATION FOR FAILURE TO COMPLETE THE ADDITIONAL EDUCATIONAL REQUIRE- MENTS AND WHO PRACTICES AS A REGISTERED PROFESSIONAL NURSE WITHOUT SUCH REGISTRATION MAY BE SUBJECT TO DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS PURSUANT TO SECTION SIXTY-FIVE HUNDRED TEN OF THIS TITLE; S 3. The provisions of this act shall not apply to: a. any student entering a generic baccalaureate program preparing registered professional nurses after the effective date of this act; b. any student currently enrolled in, or having an application pending in, a program preparing registered nurses as of the effective date of this act; c. any person already licensed as a registered professional nurse or any unlicensed graduate professional nurse who is eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination as of the effective date of this act. S 4. This act shall take effect immediately and the commissioner of education is authorized to promulgate any rule or regulation necessary to implement the provisions of this act.