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COMMITTEE AMENDMENT ADOPTED
March 27, 2002
S. Printed 3/27/02--S.
Read the first time February 28, 2001.
TO AMEND TITLE 40, CHAPTER 33, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO NURSES, BY ADDING ARTICLE 15 SO AS TO ENACT THE "REGISTERED NURSE FIRST ASSISTANTS ACT" WHICH REQUIRES HEALTH CARE FACILITIES TO ESTABLISH PROCEDURES FOR THE APPOINTMENT OF REGISTERED NURSE FIRST ASSISTANTS (RNFA) AND FOR GRANTING THESE ASSISTANTS CLINICAL PRIVILEGES; AND TO PROVIDE THAT, WHEN HEALTH INSURANCE POLICIES, HEALTH CARE SERVICES PLANS, AND OTHER CONTRACTS PAY FOR SURGICAL FIRST ASSISTING SERVICES, THEY MUST PAY FOR A RNFA WHO PERFORMS SUCH SERVICES.
Amend Title To Conform
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Chapter 33, Title 40 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 40-33-1510. This article may be cited as the 'Registered Nurse First Assistants Act'.
Section 40-33-1520. The purpose of this article is to encourage physicians and hospitals to use registered nurses, who are educationally prepared as registered nurse first assistants, to provide quality, cost-effective surgical assistant interventions to health care recipients in the State.
Section 40-33-1530. As used in this article:
(1) 'Perioperative nursing' means a practice of nursing in which registered nurses provide preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative nursing care to surgical patients.
(2) 'Recognized educational program' means a program that:
(a) addresses all content of the Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses Core Curriculum for the Registered Nurse First Assistant; and
(b) includes one academic year (two college semesters) in a college or university with didactic instruction and clinical internship programs;
(3) 'Registered nurse first assistant' or 'RNFA' means a nurse who meets the qualifications enumerated in Section 40-33-1540.
Section 40-33-1540. A RNFA is a person who:
(1) is licensed as a registered nurse under this chapter;
(2) is certified in perioperative nursing;
(3) holds a certificate from, and has successfully completed, a recognized educational program for RNFA; and
(4) becomes certified as a RNFA when eligible.
Section 40-33-1550. A health care institution employing registered nurse first assistants must establish specific procedures for the appointment and reappointment of registered nurse first assistant staff members and for granting, renewing, and revising their clinical scope of practice.
Section 40-33-1560. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, when a health insurance policy, health care services plan, any insurance contract or other contract provides for payment for surgical first assisting benefits or services, the policy, plan, or contract must be construed as providing for payment to a RNFA who performs services that are within the scope of a RNFA's professional license."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
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