On June 17, 2016, Bill C-14, legislation regarding medical assistance in dying, received Royal Assent and is now in force across Canada. The legislation amends the Criminal Code, creating exemptions from criminal prosecution for nurses and their colleagues on the health care team. This means that when eligibility criteria and other conditions are met, it is possible for RN(NP)s and RNs to be involved in medical assistance in dying without facing criminal prosecution.
The SRNA has created two practice guideline documents which highlight the changes to the Criminal Code in relation to practice, and delineate the roles of RN(NP)s and RNs who wish to be involved in medical assistance in dying in Saskatchewan. There are two guideline documents since RN(NP)s have a distinct role in being able to administer medical assistance in dying which is within their scope of practice in Saskatchewan.
Representatives of the SRNA are collaborating with representatives of the Ministry of Health, other regulatory bodies and the regional health authorities to support a coordinated approach to medical assistance in dying across the province. For more information, please access the Government of Saskatchewan website at:
The SRNA encourages RNs and RN(NP)s to consult the practice team for support for their involvement with medical assistance in dying, or to discuss or obtain resources created by the provincial working group.
Members may refer to the Canadian Nurses Protective Society for professional liability support (1-800-267-3390).
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