Registered Psychiatric Nurses, Partnering with People
The Registered Psychiatric Nurses Association of Saskatchewan recognizes that independent practice is a legitimate sphere of practice for Registered Psychiatric Nurses (RPNs). The Association also acknowledges that independent practitioners have a particular accountability to the public for their practice. In an effort to ensure that this responsibility is recognized, the Association has documented guidelines for members considering or pursuing independent practice as a registered psychiatric nurse.
Independent practice is the application of psychiatric nursing principles in unsupervised self-employment, either individually or within a transdisciplinary team framework. Psychiatric nursing principles are defined by the RPNAS Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics. An RPN in independent practice, or working through a proprietary agency or business, is responsible to maintain the standards of practice and code of ethics of the profession.
Independent psychiatric nursing practice may take a variety of forms including but not limited to:
Protection of title, as defined in Section 22, Registered Psychiatric Nurses Act, applies to any individual using the title Registered Psychiatric Nurse, RPN, Psychiatric Nurse or PN. Individuals in independent practice are required to adhere to this requirement. Use of any word, title or designation, abbreviated or otherwise, is also prohibited which may imply that the person is a practicing member.
The Association promotes and encourages the following criteria in regards to training and education of Registered Psychiatric Nurses in independent practice:
A member in independent practice must adhere to the requirement of Bylaw XIV under the Registered Psychiatric Nurses Act. All diplomas, certificates and other relevant documents must be publicly displayed and available for inspection upon request by the RPNAS, a client or a member of the public.
A member in independent practice as an RPN is required to practice in accordance with legislative requirements, including the RPNAS Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics. Independent practitioners are responsible to recognize the limits to their scope of practice. These practitioners will consult and collaborate with other health care professionals. Clients will be consulted and consent obtained to work in this fashion. RPNs working in independent practice will ensure that client records are professionally maintained, safeguarding confidentiality. Clients are to be informed of record keeping systems, any alternate methods (i.e. electronic recordings) and that this information will not be released without the written consent of the client. The client is to be fully informed of any exceptions to this practice, such as sharing information with the officers and personnel of the agency who have reasonable need for the information in the performance of their duties.
Licensure with the Registered Psychiatric Nurses Association of Saskatchewan provides liability protection for all registered psychiatric nurses. When the insured is an employee of a hospital, nursing home or other employer and such employer has other insurance against a loss covered by this policy, the Association=s insurance shall be considered secondary and non-contributing insurance. Only after claims against the employer=s insurance have been exhausted shall the Association insurer be liable. When the insurer is self-employed then this insurance becomes primary coverage. RPNAS members who are in independent practice must identify themselves as such to the Association so they can be listed as a member receiving primary coverage. Registered Psychiatric nurses in independent practice are encouraged to seek additional primary liability protection through a private insurance agency.
Approved by Council