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Scope of Practice

The nurse demonstrates an understanding of the legal scope of practice for nursing in Ontario as set out in relevant legislation and the nurse’s roles and responsibilities in relation to other health care providers.

The nurse:

2.01  Articulates the key components of the scope of practice statement as found in the Nursing Act, 1991.

2.02  Distinguishes between the nurse’s legislated scope of practice and the nurse’s individual scope of practice based on own level of competence.

2.03  Describes the four standard statements that must be considered when determining whether to perform a given procedure.

2.04  Applies the three factors that must be considered when determining the appropriate category of care provider.

2.05  Articulates the controlled acts authorized to all nurses as found in the Nursing Act, 1991.


2.06  Articulates the additional controlled acts authorized to nurse practitioners as found in the Nursing Act, 1991.

2.07  Identifies legislation that relates to controlled substances.

2.08  Differentiates between initiating and performing controlled acts.

2.09  Describes the different types of authorizing mechanisms.

2.10  Identifies situations where a nurse may accept delegation.


2.11  Identifies the authorizing mechanisms required for the administration of narcotics and controlled substances under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

2.12  Identifies situations when a nurse may delegate to others (e.g., unregulated care providers under the relevant practice guidelines).

2.13  Describes the exceptions to the need for authorization of controlled acts.

2.14  Identifies the conditions under which controlled acts can be initiated.

2.15  Identifies the limits and conditions under which all nurses can perform controlled acts.


2.16  Identifies that controlled acts cannot be ordered by an RPN.

2.17  Identifies when a nurse can accept an order from an RN or NP.

2.18  Describes how Public Hospitals Act (PHA), Regulation 965 impacts authority to initiate controlled acts.

2.19  Articulates the differences between nurses and unregulated care providers (e.g., access to controlled acts).

2.20  Identifies the three questions that must be asked and other conditions that must be met when deciding whether unregulated care providers should perform a specific activity (other than controlled acts).


2.21  Lists the components associated with the delegation of controlled acts to unregulated care providers.

2.22  Differentiates between delegating, assigning, supervising and teaching a procedure.

2.23  Identifies the conditions under which a nurse may accept telephone or verbal orders (medication, treatment, etc.).


Page last reviewed September 19, 2012