Registered Nurses (Certified)

Registered nurses with certified practice (RN(C)) are authorized to independently refer eligible beneficiaries of the Medical Services Plan (MSP) for selected medically necessary laboratory tests approved as within scope by the British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM). The menu of laboratory tests is restricted to those tests that are included in the BCCNM approved Decision Support Tools (DSTs) for certified practice categories.

The RN(C) referral program improves patient care in British Columbia and facilitates registered nurses with certified practice to work to their full scope of practice. This program is of particular benefit to patients in communities who do not have an attendant physician or nurse practitioner, but who do have access to nursing care provided by an RN(C).

RN(C)s who work with out-patients are authorized to independently refer eligible MSP beneficiaries for selected laboratory medicine tests (benefits) approved by the BCCNM as within scope for certified practice. RN(C)s will not submit billing information to MSP; they may only make referrals for approved laboratory services.

RN(C)s whose certified practice activities are associated with in-patients - those who are admitted to an Emergency Room, a Hospital, or a Diagnostic and Treatment Centre do not need to enrol for an MSP practitioner number. Patients in these settings are considered in-patients and laboratory tests for these patients may not be referred to MSP as a benefit in these settings. 

The RN(C) program is targeted to those RN(C)s currently registered with the BCCNM that have been certified in one or more of three practice areas: Remote, Reproductive - Care Contraceptive Management, and Reproductive Care - Sexually Transmitted Diseases.

Out-patients are defined by MSP as:

Ambulatory patients who are sent to hospital by a referring practitioner solely and

  1. specifically to have a diagnostic service performed for example: blood work, x-ray. 
  2. Ambulatory patients attending an out-patient department or clinic which has been formally established by the hospital, staffed appropriately and open during regular specified hours for example: an eye clinic or family practice clinic. 
  3. Ambulatory patients who attend an appointment at an Emergency Department made at least 48 hours in advance by the patient’s physician in order for that physician to render a specified procedure or assessment relative to a non-emergency condition for example: cast change, endoscopy, and suture removal.