Amendments to the Health Care (Consent) and Care Facility (Admission) Act (HCCFAA), which allow a medical practitioner or prescribed health care provider to determine whether an adult is incapable of giving or refusing consent to admission, come info force Nov. 4, 2019. Please note that this change applies to NPs, RNs and RPNs (not LPNs).
BCCNP is developing limits and conditions for the RN, RPN, and NP scopes of practice for nurses who will perform these assessments. Nurses performing such assessments are reminded they must also follow all relevant guidelines and processes established by their employer.
Note that this does not give NPs the authority to admit clients under the Mental Health Act. This authority remains with physicians.
The Ministry of Health has developed an eLearning course,
Consent to Care Facility Admission in British Columbia: A Course for Managers and Assessors, which is
available on the eLearning Hub. Nurses can also reference
Part 3 of the HCCCFAA (review the Order in Council) establishes the requirement for consent to be sought and obtained for adults being admitted into care facilities. It also sets out criteria for determining if an adult is incapable of giving or refusing consent for care facility admission and identifying the appropriate substitute if an adult is determined to be incapable (similar to the consent requirements for health care, under
Part 2 of the same legislation).
The legislation states that a medical practitioner or a prescribed health care provider may determine whether an adult is incapable of giving or refusing consent to admission. The amendments to the Health Care Consent Regulation define prescribed health care providers as including registrants of the professional colleges for social workers, psychologists, occupational therapists and nurses (only registered nurses, registered psychiatric nurses and nurse practitioners). The same regulation also establishes requirements for incapability assessments.
These requirements will apply to admissions of adults to long-term care facilities licensed under the
Community Care and Assisted Living Act, as well as private hospitals and extended care hospitals under the
Hospital Act. The legislation also applies to licensed facilities for adults with mental health or substance use issues, as well as other populations such as those with acquired brain injuries (Community Living BC facilities are excluded). The legislation applies to both publicly subsidized facilities and non-subsidized facilities. It does not apply to assisted living residences.