Extension of renewal fees: For nurses and nursing assistants whose birthdates are between April 1, 2020, and September 30, 2020, the renewal fee due date is extended to September 30, 2020. Your renewal date on Provider Credential Search and NURSYs will continue to show your birthdate, but the renewal date will be September 30, 2020.
120-Day or 4-Month Rule for Nursing Assistant Training - Proclamation 20-37 from Governor Inslee waives the requirement for nursing assistants-registered (NARs) to complete training and testing to become certified nursing assistants within four months of employment with a nursing home, effective through April 29, 2020.
NAR Work Hours in Sanctioned Facilities - While the NCQAC can now temporarily allow programs to count students’ NAR work hours as their clinical hours when documentation of hours and competency evaluation by the supervising LPN or RN is provided --this not true in sanctioned facilities. Federal regulations for sanctioned facilities mandate that clinical training will not be conducted or assessed by any employee of the sanctioned nursing facility.
Skills Checklist for NAR Work Hours - A process and checklist to document these hours is in development and expected to be available next week.
Nursing Assistant Students Still Deemed Essential - March 27 communication to programs continues to be in effect regarding skills lab and clinical rotations. This means:
- no in-person classroom/theory content is allowed, but programs may be approved to teach theory content live, online after providing basic information to the NCQAC;
- information included in Proclamation 20-12 regarding skills labs, simulation labs, and clinical experiences in facilities remains in effect, including strict implementation and monitoring of social distancing measures by designated school officials and following clinical protocols aligned with public health guidance; and
- while Proclamation 20-12 allows for skills lab and clinical, the NCQAC encourages nursing assistant programs to pursue instead the pathway of providing live, online training only for classroom/theory content, allowing interested students to work as nursing assistants-registered (NARs) in nursing homes under the supervision of an LPN or RN early in their training program as they work toward completion. Nursing assistant-registered (NAR) applications and fee information can be found here.
Improved Access to Medicare and Medicaid Home Health Services and Equipment - The third federal COVID-19 response package signed into law on Friday contains a measure that would enable nurse practitioners and clinical nurse specialists to order Medicare Home Health Services. In addition, a set of waivers aligned Medicare home health ordering by allowing nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and other professionals whose state licensure allows to order Medicaid supported home health care during the pandemic. The Washington State Health Care Authority has initiated the emergency rule process which is necessary to fully implement these CMS changes. You can find more information on these changes at:
- National Council of State Boards of Nursing
HHS Sends Letter, Guidance to States Encouraging State Licensing Waivers, Relaxation of Scope of Practice Requirements
This HHS-approved document will be submitted to the Office of the Federal Register (OFR) for publication and has not yet been placed on public display or published in the Federal Register. The document may vary slightly from the published document if minor editorial changes have been made during the OFR review process. The document published in the Federal Register is the official HHS-approved document.
- Home Health Agencies: Flexibilities to Fight COVID-19
These temporary changes will apply immediately across the entire U.S. healthcare system for the duration of the emergency declaration