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Specialized nurse practitioners in Quebec will be able to use new powers starting in January

Danielle McCann, the province's minister of higher education, described the extra powers as a 'historic breakthrough.'. Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press

In Quebec, specialized nurse practitioners will be able to diagnose diseases and make treatment plans for diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease without the supervision of a doctor as well as carry out pregnancy follow-ups starting in January 2021.

This “historic breakthrough,” which “fully recognizes the skills” of specialized nurse practitioners, will result in better access to health care for the population, Quebec Minister of Higher Education Danielle McCann said in a statement Friday. She is also responsible for the application of professional laws.

“I hope that the (specialized nurse practitioners) can contribute to the improvement of our health care to the height of their ambitions and their competences,” she said.

“The entry into force of this law constitutes undoubtedly the result of one of the files I am most proud of in my political career.”

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The change is made possible by Quebec’s approval of the Regulation respecting specialized nurse practitioners. It implements the Act to amend the Nurses Act and other provisions in order to promote access to health services.

McCann introduced her bill in October 2019 when she was the province’s health minister.

The law allows specialized nurse practitioners to perform certain acts formerly reserved for physicians, in particular for matters of occupational health and safety, assistance provided to individuals and families, automobile insurance, health and social services, and on-call duty.

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