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Clarification: NP scope and Mental Health Act


May 7, 2020

Updated May 15, 2020

BCCNP has received a number of questions regarding nurse practitioners’ scope of practice in relation to the Mental Health Act.

Bill 10 (Nurse Practitioners Statutes Amendment Act, 2011) was passed in the Legislative Assembly in 2011. And while the Legislative Assembly did enact specific changes to the Mental Health Act in Bill 10, the provincial government has not yet brought those changes into force. This means that nurse practitioners can assess and treat mental illnesses; however, nurse practitioners do not currently have the authority under the Mental Health Act to complete the forms required for involuntary admission or to allow police to take an apprehended person to a designated facility. Please refer to the BCCNP document Legislation Relevant to Nurses' Practice under the Mental Health Act section for more information.

Note that government has recently begun working on this again.

Questions?

Inquiries about the work of government in this area should be directed to Zak Matieschyn, Nurse Practitioner Lead, Nursing Policy Secretariat at Zachary.Matieschyn@gov.bc.ca. If you have questions for BCCNP please contact practice@bccnp.ca.