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2012 Legislative Updates

During the 2011-2012 Legislative Session, many bills of general interest to the Board or those having potential impact on the administration of the Board were followed. Although these bills address many subjects, each affects registered nursing in some way. The Board followed thirty-one (31) bills of which nineteen (19) were signed into law by the Governor, one (1) joint resolution was passed by the Assembly and Senate, four (4) bills were vetoed, and seven (7) failed in committees or were no longer applicable to the Board. The following is a brief description of those bill followed by the Board that were chaptered. Unless otherwise stated, the statutes of 2011 became effective January 1, 2012, and the statutes of 2012 become effective January 1, 2013.

For additional information, please refer to www.leginfo.ca.gov.

Assembly Bills

Assembly & Senate Joint Resolution

Senate Bills

AB 40 (Yamada)
Chapter 659, Statutes of 2012
Elder abuse: reporting Link to AB 40)
AB 40 requires a mandated reporter to report by telephone the suspected or alleged physical abuse, as defined, that occurs in a long-term care facility, to the local law enforcement agency, immediately, and no later than within 2 hours of the reporter observing, obtaining knowledge of, or suspecting the physical abuse. A written report must be made to the local ombudsman, the corresponding licensing agency, and the local law enforcement agency within 2 hours of the reporter observing, obtaining knowledge of, or suspecting the physical abuse. The bill requires that, if the suspected abuse does not result in serious bodily injury, a mandated reporter make a report by telephone and in writing within 24 hours of the reporter observing, obtaining knowledge of, or suspecting the physical abuse, as specified.

AB 1424 (Perea)
Chapter 455, Statutes of 2011
Franchise Tax Board: delinquent tax debt (Link to AB 1424)

AB 1424 authorizes all State licensing entities, including the Board of Registered Nursing as a board and bureau under the Department of Consumer Affairs, other than the Contractorsí State License Board, to deny, suspend, or revoke a license if the licensee or applicantís name appears on the Franchise Tax Boardís or the State Board of Equalizationís certified lists of the top 500 largest tax delinquencies over $100,000. This bill authorizes the Department of Consumer Affairs to suspend a license in the event that a board fails to take action.

AB 1434 (Feuer)
Chapter 519, Statutes of 2012
Child abuse reporting: mandated reporters (Link to AB 1434)

AB 1434 adds employees and administrators of a public or private postsecondary institution, whose duties bring the administrator or employee into contact with children on a regular basis or who supervises those whose duties bring the administrator or employee into contact with children on a regular basis, as to child abuse or neglect occurring on that institutionís premises or at an official activity of, or program conducted by, the institution, to the list of individuals who are mandated reporters.

AB 1588 (Atkins)
Chapter 742, Statutes of 2012
Professions and vocations: reservist licensees: fees and continuing education (Link to AB 1558)

AB 1588 requires the Board of Registered Nursing, as being among the boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs that regulate professions and vocations, with certain exceptions, to waive the renewal fees, continuing education requirements, and other renewal requirements as determined by the board, if any are applicable, of any licensee or registrant who is called to active duty as a member of the United States Armed Forces or the California National Guard if certain requirements are met. The bill prohibits a licensee or registrant from engaging in any activities requiring a license while a waiver is in effect. If the licensee or registrant will provide services for which he or she is licensed while on active duty, the board shall convert the license status to military active and no private practice of any type shall be permitted. The bill requires a licensee or registrant to meet certain renewal requirements within a specified time period after being discharged from active duty service prior to engaging in any activity requiring a license. The bill requires a licensee or registrant to notify the board of his or her discharge from active duty within a specified time period.

AB 1896 (Chesbro)
Chapter 119, Statutes of 2012
Tribal health programs: health practitioners (Link to AB 1896)

AB 1896 codifies the federal requirement by specifying that a person who is licensed as a health care practitioner in any other state and is employed by a tribal health program is exempt from this stateís licensing requirements with respect to acts authorized under the personís license where the tribal health program performs specified services.

AB 1904 (Block)
Chapter 399, Statutes of 2012
Professions and vocations: military spouses (Link to AB 1904)

AB 1904 requires the Board of Registered Nursing, as a board within the Department of Consumer Affairs, to expedite the licensure process for an applicant who holds a license in the same profession or vocation in another jurisdiction and is married to, or in a legal union with, an active duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States who is assigned to a duty station in California under official active duty military orders.

AB 2296 (Block)
Chapter 585, Statutes of 2012
California Private Postsecondary Act of 2009 (Link to AB 2296)

AB 2296 prohibits an institution, as defined, from, among other things, offering an unaccredited associate, baccalaureate, masterís degree, or doctoral degree program without disclosing to prospective students prior to enrollment that the degree program is unaccredited, whether the degree issued is in a field that requires licensure in California, and any known limitation of the degree, including, but not limited to, whether the degree is recognized for licensure or certification in California and other states. The bill lists specified limitations of the degree program whose disclosure the bill requires. This bill requires the school catalog to include a statement specifying whether the institution, or any of its degree programs, is accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education, and, if the institution is unaccredited, or offers an associate, baccalaureate, masterís, or doctoral degree program that is not accredited, the bill requires the statement to disclose the known and specified limitations of the degree program. The bill requires specified information to be contained on the programís Web site, in the school catalog, and in the School Performance Fact Sheet, and the annual report made to the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education related to its unaccredited status. This bill requires an institution to annually report, and publish in its School Performance Fact Sheet, the most recent official 3-year cohort default rate for federal student loans for the institution and the percentage of enrolled students receiving federal student loans.

AB 2348 (Mitchell)
Chapter 460, Statutes of 2012
Registered nurses: dispensation of drugs (Link to AB 2348)

AB 2348 authorizes a registered nurse to dispense specified drugs or devices upon an order issued by a nurse-midwife, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant if the nurse is functioning within a specified clinic. The bill authorizes a registered nurse to dispense or administer hormonal contraceptives in strict adherence to specified standardized procedures.

AB 2462 (Block)
Chapter 404, Statutes of 2012
Public postsecondary education: academic credit for prior military academic Experience(Link to AB 2462)

AB 2462 requires the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges to determine by July 1, 2015, the courses for which credit should be awarded for prior military experience, as specified.

AB 2570 (Hill)
Chaptered 561, Statutes of 2012
Licensees: settlement agreements (Link to AB 2570)

AB 2570 prohibits a licensee who is regulated by the Department of Consumer Affairs or various boards, bureaus, or programs, or an entity or person acting as an authorized agent of a licensee, from including, or permitting to be included, a provision in an agreement to settle a civil dispute that prohibits the other party in that dispute from contacting, filing a complaint with, or cooperating with the department, board, bureau, or program, or that requires the other party to withdraw a complaint from the department, board, bureau, or program that regulates the licensee, except as specified. A licensee in violation of these provisions would be subject to disciplinary action by the board, bureau, or program. The bill prohibits a board, bureau, or program from requiring its licensees in a disciplinary action that is based on a complaint or report that has been settled in a civil action to pay additional moneys to the benefit of any plaintiff in the civil action. This bill authorizes a board, bureau, or program within the Department of Consumer Affairs to adopt a regulation exempting agreements to settle certain causes of action from these provisions.

AJR 24 (Bonilla)
Resolution Chapter 55, Statutes of 2012
Proposed federal Student-to-School Nurse Ratio Improvement Acts of 2011 and 2012 (Link to AJR 24)

AJR 24 urges the members of California’s congressional delegation to sign on as cosponsors of, and requests that the Congress and the President of the United States enact, the proposed federal Student-to-School Nurse Ratio Improvement Act of 2011 or the proposed federal Student-to-School Nurse Ratio Improvement Act of 2012.

SB 98 (Senate Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review)
Chapter 4, Statutes of 2012
Nursing (Link to SB 98)

SB 98, to take effect immediately, establishes a new Board of Registered Nursing, vests that board with the same powers as the previous board, and requires the board to appoint an executive officer. The bill repeals the authority of the board and its executive officer on January 1, 2016. The bill requires the executive officer of the prior board to serve as interim executive officer of the new board until the appointment of a permanent executive officer. The bill ratifies and declares valid a specified interagency agreement entered into between the former board and the director of the Department of Consumer Affairs and enacts other related provisions. This bill requires that one of the initial public members appointed by the Governor serve a term of one year, that the other public member initially appointed by the Governor serve a term of 5 years, that the initial licensed members serve terms of 2, 3, or 4 years, as specified, and that the initial public members appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules and the Speaker of the Assembly serve terms of 4 years. The bill appropriates specified sums from the Board of Registered Nursing Fund to the Board of Registered Nursing for purposes of administering the Nursing Practice Act.

SB 100 (Price)
Chapter 645, Statutes of 2011
Healing arts (Link to SB 100)

SB 100, as relates to nursing practice, requires the Medical Board of California (MBC) to adopt regulations by January 1, 2013, regarding the appropriate level of physician availability needed within clinics or other settings using certain laser or intense pulse light devices for elective cosmetic procedures. The other provisions of this bill address the MBC and various issues related to accreditation of outpatient settings.

SB 122 (Price)
Chapter 789, Statutes of 2012
Healing arts (Link to SB 122)

SB 122 requires meetings of the board to be held in northern and southern California. This bill deletes the provisions requiring a school of nursing that is not affiliated with an institution of higher education to make an agreement with such an institution for the purposes of awarding nursing degrees. The bill instead allows the board to approve a school of nursing that is affiliated with an institution of higher education, and that is subject to the requirements set forth in the California Private Postsecondary Education Act of 2009 to grant nursing degrees. The bill specifies that the term “approved school of nursing” includes an approved nursing program. The bill subjects all approved schools of nursing to specified fees for deposit into the Board of Registered Nursing Fund, a continuously appropriated fund. The bill requires the board to have a memorandum of understanding with the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education to delineate the powers of the board and bureau, as specified. This bill authorizes the board to issue cease and desist orders to a school of nursing that is not approved by the board, and requires the board to notify the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education and the office of the Attorney General of such a school. The bill makes it unprofessional conduct for any registered nurse to violate the provision that it is unlawful for anyone to conduct a school of nursing unless the school has been approved by the board. This bill also contains provisions related to licensure of physicians by the Medical Board of California.

SB 161 (Huff)
Chaptered 560, Statutes of 2011
Schools: emergency medical assistance: administration of epilepsy medication (Link to SB 161)
SB 161 allows, until January 1, 2017, school districts, county offices of education, or charter schools to participate in a program to train nonmedical school employees to administer emergency antiseizure medication to students with epilepsy in the absence of a credentialed school nurse or other licensed nurse in accordance with guidelines developed by the State Department of Education in consultation with the State Department of Public Health. The bill requires the State Department of Education to post these guidelines on its Web site by July 1, 2012.

SB 541 (Price)
Chapter 339, Statutes of 2011
Regulatory boards: expert consultants (Link to SB 541)
SB 541 authorizes boards that regulate and license professions and vocations within the Department of Consumer Affairs to enter into an agreement with an expert consultant, subject to the standards regarding personal service contracts in state employment, to provide enforcement and examination assistance. The bill requires each board to establish policies and procedures for the selection and use of these consultants. This bill takes effect immediately as an urgency statute.

SB 623 (Kehoe)
Chapter 450, Statutes of 2012
Public health: health workforce projects (Link to SB 623)
SB 623 requires the Office of Statewide Planning and Development to extend the duration of Health Workforce Pilot Project No. 171 through January 1, 2014, to provide the sponsors of the project an opportunity to achieve publication of the data collected during the project in a peer-reviewed journal, among other specified purposes.

SB 943 (Price)
Chapter 350, Statutes of 2011
Healing arts (Link to SB 943)
SB 943, as relates to the Board of Registered Nursing, limits the board determination related to establishing competency to practice registered nursing to only the education of those applicants who have served on active duty in the medical corps in the United States Armed Forces. The applicants submit a record of specified training to the board for evaluation in order to satisfy the courses of instruction requirement. The applicants would continue to meet the other requirements for licensure. This bill also contains changes in the laws related to other healing arts licensees of boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs.

SB 1365 (Negrete McLeod)
Chapter 69, Statutues of 2012
Emergency medical services: immunity (Link to SB 1365)
SB 1365 extends existing liability limits applicable to firefighters, police officers or other law enforcement officers, and emergency medical technicians to include emergency medical services rendered during an emergency air or ground ambulance transport, and emergency medical services rendered by a registered nurse at the scene of an emergency or during an emergency air or ground ambulance transport. This bill provides that, for purposes of this law, “registered nurse” means a registered nurse trained in emergency medical services.

SB 1524 (Hernandez, E)
Chapter 796, Statutes of 2012
Nurse practitioners (Link to SB 1524)
SB 1524 deletes the requirement for at least 6 months’ duration of supervised experience for nurse practitioner or nurse-midwife eligibility for a furnishing number. The bill authorizes a physician and surgeon to determine the extent of the supervision in connection with the furnishing or ordering of drugs and devices by a nurse practitioner or certified nurse-midwife.