NEW YORK NURSE: October/November 2008
Q.: I heard a new law was instituted this year that requires outpatient offices such as gastroenterologists to report adverse events and to become accredited by July 2009. Are nurses mandated reporters and will nurses who work in these settings be affected?
A.: Beginning in January 2008, office-based surgery (OBS) centers are required to report adverse events to the Department of Health. As of July 2009, OBS centers must be accredited by a National Accreditation agency. This law provides for the oversight of OBS through the Department of Health in order to afford patients safe and quality care in New York State.
Affected settings include urgent care centers where surgical or invasive procedures are performed using moderate or deeper sedation. The law defines OBS as any surgical or invasive procedures requiring moderate or deep sedation or general anesthesia. Invasive procedures include, but are not limited to, endoscopy, needle biopsy, contrasted (intravascular injection) imaging, or liposuction of greater than 500cc of fat.
The basic requirements of the law include that physicians, physician assistants (PAs), and specialist assistants (SAs) can only perform OBS in a setting that has received accreditation. These professionals must also report adverse events. Failure to adhere to either of these requirements is considered professional misconduct. Adverse events that must be reported within one business day of learning of the event include:
Confidentiality protections are provided for anyone reporting a violation. Hospitals, although not considered mandated reporters, are encouraged to report any transfer or admission to the facility of an individual who had undergone a procedure within 72 hours at an affected outpatient center.
Registered professional nurses, licensed practical nurses, and nurse practitioners are also not mandated reporters. However, the names of all who participated in the procedure must be listed on the adverse reporting form. The form should also indicate the roles of the nurses involved in the procedure.
For more information regarding OBS go to:
This is a sample of the questions NYSNA’s experts answer each day. The advice given is specific for the situation described and may not be applicable generally. If you have questions about your own work setting, it is recommended that you contact your NYSNA Nursing Representative or the Education, Practice, and Research Program, 11 Cornell Road, Latham, New York 12110-1499 or call 800-724-NYRN, ext. 282.