Board of Nursing: News

 


 

 

 

New and Revised Rules Effective June 14, 2021

New and revised rules for the State Board of Nursing went into effect on June 14, 2021. The revisions to Rule 1.29, corrected language in the rule that conflicted with portions of section 12-30-115, C.R.S., in Colorado Senate Bill 20-102 (Concerning required disclosures to patients regarding formal actions based on sexual misconduct); and the new Rule 1.30, was adopted to implement Colorado Senate Bill 19-079 (Concerning a requirement that certain practitioners prescribe controlled substances electronically).

To view the details of this rulemaking project and track all rule changes, see Tracking Number 2021-00174. The Board encourages all licensees and stakeholders to read the new and revised Rules 1.29 and 1.30. Please direct any questions to dora_nursingboard@state.co.us.  
 

 

 

New and Revised Rules

New and revised rules for the State Board of Nursing went into effect on December 30, 2020. These rules were adopted to implement:

  • Colorado House Bill 20-1216: Concerning the continuation of the State Board of Nursing, and, in connection therewith, implementing the recommendations contained in the 2019 sunset report by the Department of Regulatory Agencies;
  • Colorado House Bill 20-1183: Concerning the continuation of the certification of nurse aides by the State Board of Nursing, and, in connection therewith, implementing the recommendations contained in the 2019 sunset report by the Department of Regulatory Agencies;
  • Colorado House Bill 20-1326: Concerning an expansion of an individual's ability to practice an occupation in Colorado through creation of an occupational credential portability program; and 
  • Colorado Senate Bill 20-102: Concerning required disclosures to patients regarding formal actions based on sexual misconduct.

To view the details of this rulemaking project and track all rule changes, follow Tracking Number 2020-00736. The Board encourages all licensees and stakeholders to read the final, published New and Revised Rules. Please direct any questions to dora_nursingboard@state.co.us.  

 

 

 

Emergency Rules and Temporary Licensure FAQs for Nursing and CNAs


The Division Director of the Division of Professions and Occupations at DORA adopted Emergency Rules regarding temporary Nurse and CNA licensure and waiver of certain education rules pursuant to Executive Order 2020- 038, which was amended, restated, and extended through Executive Order 2020-158, and amended and extended through Executive Order 2020-271 on December 3rd, 2020. Below are some frequently asked questions on the effects of the Orders for professionals, students, and other stakeholders.

What are the current emergency rules surrounding temporary nursing and CNA licenses?
Pursuant to Board of Nursing Rule 1.26 (c) the State Board of Nursing may issue a temporary license to:

  • an applicant that is a graduate of an approved nursing or CNA program who meets all qualifications for licensure with the exception of completing the required exam;
  • an applicant that holds an active, unrestricted license, in good standing, in a non-compact state; and
  • a CNA applicant for reinstatement who meets all criteria for reinstatement with the exception of completing the required skills examination. 

The intent of these emergency rules is to implement the Executive Order (Order) by expanding our healthcare workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic. Applicants who are issued a temporary license under these rules must be under direct supervision of a licensed nurse in good standing with the Board of Nursing.    

What are the timelines for temporary licenses that have been issued, and how long are they effective?

Professional and Practical Nurses

  • Temporary licenses issued between May 1st and August 20th, 2020, are effective from the date of issuance through December 31, 2020. After this date, the person must cease practice until a full license is granted or another temporary license has been issued. A person may apply for another temporary license that expires 60 days after the applicant is scheduled to sit for their examination, provided certain Board requirements are met. 
  • Temporary licenses issued between August 30th, 2020, and December 7, 2020, are effective from the date of issuance through March 31, 2021. After this date, the person must cease practice until a full license is granted or another temporary license has been issued. A person may apply for another temporary license that expires 60 days after the applicant is scheduled to sit for their examination, provided certain Board requirements are met.
  • Temporary licenses issued on or after December 7, 2020, are effective from the date of issuance through June 30, 2021. If a full license has not been issued by July 1, 2021, the temporary licensee must cease practice until a fill license is granted or another temporary license has been issued.  

Certified Nurse Aides

  • Temporary licenses issued between May 1st and August 20th, 2020, are effective from the date of issuance through December 31, 2020.  After this date, the person must cease practice until a full license is granted or another temporary license has been issued. A person may apply for another temporary license that expires 60 days after the applicant is scheduled to sit for the required examinations, provided certain Board requirements are met.  The applicant must attest that the applicant has registered for the next available written examination and will register for the required skills examination within 60 days of availability in the applicant’s regional area. Please note, the test vendor is currently providing the written exam portion of the Certified Nurse Aide Exam through computer-based testing (CBT), and the skills portion is scheduled to begin in January 2021. Visit our test vendor's website for more information. 
  • Temporary certificates issued between August 30th, 2020, and December 7, 2020, are effective from the date of issuance through March 31st, 2021. After this date, the person must cease practice until a full certificate is granted or another temporary certificate has been issued. A person may apply for another temporary certificate that expires 60 days after the applicant is scheduled to sit for their examination, provided certain Board requirements are met. The applicant must attest that the applicant has registered for the next available written examination and will register for the required skills examination within 60 days of availability in the applicant’s regional area.
  • Temporary licenses issued on or after December 7, 2020, are effective from the date of issuance through June 30, 2021. If a full license has not been issued by July 1, 2021, the temporary licensee must cease practice until a fill license is granted or another temporary license has been issued 

What does this mean for those with temporary licenses that expire on December 31st?
Temporary licensees or certificants with a temporary license or certificate that expires on December 31st must cease practice on January 1, 2021, if they have not obtained a full license or additional temporary license by that time.
 
How long will the suspension of the current nurse and CNA education requirements be in effect?   Emergency Rules, effective December 7, 2020, suspend certain educational requirements to allow nursing and CNA students to complete their hours via simulated training for 120 days or until the expiration of the Executive Orders. The Board understands this may be a challenge to those educational facilities hoping to set their curriculum in the coming semesters. However, the Board only has the authority to keep these in-person requirements suspended as long as the state of emergency and Executive Order remain in effect. Communications will be sent to licensees, educational institutions, and other stakeholders if there is a change, extension, or expiration of the Order.
 
How should nurse educational facilities plan accordingly for the next semester?
Educational facilities should be prepared to be flexible and accommodating with quickly-evolving rule changes and requirements. While the current suspension of in-person requirements remains in effect, this may change with either the expiration or termination of the current Order or they may continue if the Order is amended to be reinstated. Facilities should be aware that changes to the regulations may happen quickly. Therefore, flexibility, accommodations, and back-up planning for student learning are paramount in today’s COVID-19 environment. 
   
Why can’t the State Board of Nursing extend the timeline for temporary licenses and suspended in-person educational requirements?
The Board, along with many other state agencies in Colorado, are operating in a very fluid, dynamic situation because of the current COVID-19 challenges. Under these circumstances, the Board only has the authority to extend these allowances within the existing Order. The Board cannot legally change these requirements or timelines without an extension or amendment to Executive Order 2020-158. As situations evolve and changes are necessary, the Board will continue to provide timely and up-to-date information on respective rule changes that affect schools, students, licensees, and the larger nursing community in Colorado. 
 
Where can I get more information about the Executive Order and the Emergency Rules?
More information can be found by visiting the Division of Professions and Occupations’ COVID-19 Emergency Regulations website. Additionally, we encourage all nursing and healthcare professionals to review the State of Colorado’s COVID-19 healthcare provider guidance page for information on COVID-19 safety guidelines for practitioners. For additional questions or concerns, please contact DPO@state.co.us

 

 

CNAs Urged to Regularly Test for Coronavirus

Certified Nurse Aides, Nursing Home Administrators, and other workers in Colorado residential care facilities are encouraged to participate in regular COVID-19 testing. Regular testing is important to limit the spread of the virus in facilities. Benefits include keeping residents and other staff safe, while also reducing the chance of infection in homes and communities.  Those who do test positive should remain in isolation until:

  • At least 10 days have passed since symptoms began or there are no symptoms;
  • 10 days have passed since a positive test;
  • Fever is gone for one full day without using medication to bring down the fever;
  • Other symptoms, such as cough or shortness of breath, have improved.

Healthcare workers may need to isolate themselves for longer periods and should consult their employer or a healthcare provider.   Please see https://covid19.colorado.gov/how-to-isolate for details.  The Department of Labor and Employment also has produced a resource on employment protections for those who contract the virus that includes information on workers' rights to paid leave based on a positive test for COVID-19.

Further, a Residential Care Strike Team has been formed to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in all high-density environments serving older adults and people with disabilities.

 

 

Confidential Agreements

Confidential Agreements Webinar Recording

 

 

 

Guidance to Physicians/Dentists/Advance Practice Nurses who make medical marijuana recommendations, in light of Executive Action taken pursuant to COVID-19:

On March 20, 2020, Governor Polis issued Executive Order D 2020 011. Directive II.B temporarily suspends C.R.S. § 25-1.5-106(2)(a.5)(I), which requires an appropriate personal physical examination for the issuance of medical marijuana cards, through April 18, 2020. 

As a result of, and during the effective dates of, Executive Order D 2020 011, telehealth technologies are not prohibited for use to establish a bonafide physician-patient relationship, to prevent exposure of COVID-19 among medical professionals and medical marijuana patients.

 

 

New Disclosure Required

On May 14, 2019, Governor Jared Polis signed House Bill 19-1174 Out of Network Healthcare Services. The bill includes provisions for how health insurance carriers will reimburse providers (doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers) for out-of-network emergency and non-emergency care. The new law went into effect on January 1, 2020, and also requires healthcare providers to develop and provide consumer disclosures about the potential effects of receiving emergency or non-emergency services from an out-of-network provider, and the possibility of “surprise  billing.” As part of the implementation of House Bill 19-1174 Out-of-network Surprise Billing, the Division of Professions and Occupations is providing a sample disclosure form. Please feel free to use your own form if you prefer.

 

 

Revised Opioid Guidelines Adopted

On March 14, 2019, the revised  Guidelines for Prescribing and Dispensing Opioidswere adopted by all six of Colorado's prescribing and dispensing Boards: the Colorado Dental Board, the Colorado Medical Board, the State Board of Nursing, the State Board of Optometry, the Colorado Podiatry Board, and the State Board of Pharmacy, and endorsed by the State Board of Veterinary Medicine.

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New Articulated Plan Toolkit & Templates