Ask a Nursing Advisor

I am interested in starting my own business providing registered nursing services. What professional responsibilities do I need to consider?

If you are looking at starting your own business, it is important to know that RNs are legally permitted to offer health services that fall within the practice of nursing as interpreted by the SRNA. Self-employed RNs and NPs must comply with the Registered Nurses Act, 1988, the current practice standards, entry-level competencies, CNA Code of Ethics for Registered Nurses, 2017, SRNA bylaws and employer policies when providing care. Section 2(k) of The Registered Nurses Act, 1988 clearly defines the scope of practice and should be reviewed prior to starting any business.

In addition to the professional requirements, RNs and NPs in self-employed practice require knowledge and must practice in compliance with relevant health care legislation, privacy laws and business regulations. RNs and NPs who are “certified” to perform procedures, administer medications and provide products must ensure that all activities they perform are authorized in the SRNA Bylaws and follow the Act.

The newly revised Self-Employed Practice Guideline, 2021, provides more information and other considerations for self-employed practice such as:

  • The process for recognizing your area of practice and appropriate use of title
  • Liability protection
  • Responsibilities of self-employed RNs and NPs
  • Situations where conflict of interest may arise
  • Information management and documentation
    • HIPA and PIPEDA rules and regulations
    • Platform and device standards required to protect client information
    • Proper storage and disposal of client information according to federal and provincial privacy legislation
  • Policy and Procedure Development
  • Quality Improvement and Risk Management
  • Advertising rules and regulations
    • Sharing information in a professional manner that accurately conveys the standards of care and services that are provided
    • Avoiding the use of words such as “expert” or “specialist” to reduce the misinterpretation of the scope of practice the RN or NP may have

It is important to note that there are many variables to take into consideration prior to starting your own business. Being aware of the rules, regulations, laws and procedures that are in place is crucial to ensure the safety of those who may be in your care.

If you have any questions about self-employed practice, please direct them to practiceadvice@srna.org.

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