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Nurses are the single largest group of healthcare professionals in Canada; yet people often find it difficult to tell which healthcare providers are actually nurses. Many people are also unfamiliar with the extent of what nurses do and what responsibilities they hold – which is generally referred to within the profession as their ‘scope of practice’.

There are three categories of nurses in Nova Scotia: licensed practical nurses (LPNs), registered nurses (RNs), and nurse practitioners (NPs). Provincial law protects the title ‘nurse’, and only those licensed in one of these three categories can call themselves a ‘nurse’ and use the designation of ‘LPN’, ‘RN’, or ‘NP’.

The College of Licensed Practical Nurses regulates the practice of LPNs and us, the College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia,  regulates the practice of RNs and NPs.

While the overall goal of nursing is to promote optimum health and prevent illness, the roles and responsibilities of RNs and NPs differ. These differences are based on provincial law as well as individual nurses’ initial and ongoing education, experience, and professional development. In their work settings, nurses practise together and with other healthcare providers to ensure quality care. In some situations the roles and responsibilities of nurses may overlap.

Get to know the types of nurses CRNNS regulates:

ABOUT CRNNS

The College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia is the body that regulates the practice of RNs and NPs to protect and serve the public interest in Nova Scotia.


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