NEW YORK NURSE: March 2011
I take an OSHA course in infection control at my facility each year. Is this considered the equivalent of an “approved course” to meet the mandatory infection control course required every four years for re-registration of licensure as a registered professional nurse in New York state?
No. The Education Law requires that every four years, RNs practicing in New York state complete an “approved course” in infection control and barrier precautions. RNs must document compliance with the State Education Department (SED) at the time of their first registration and every subsequent re-registration. Courses offered to fulfill only the regulations of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) do not include all six core elements that must be included, at a minimum, in either approved course work, or course work that could be deemed to be equivalent.
To meet this requirement, you may choose a training provider that has been approved by either SED or the Department of Health (DOH). The list of approved providers of training in infection control can be found at http://www.op.nysed.gov/training/icproviders.htm. Providers must use the prescribed syllabus prepared by SED. They are required to cover, at a minimum, the six core elements jointly approved by SED and DOH, and are authorized to issue a certification of completion for each person completing the course work.
NYSNA is an approved provider of Mandated Infection Control Training and the online course can easily be accessed through e-leaRN at www.elearnonline.net. Successful results are submitted electronically to the SED Licensing Division every day at 4 p.m.
If you elect to take non-approved infection control course work within the four years prior to your application and can document that the course covered the six core elements, you may attest this equivalency in Section 3 (the exemption section) of the attestation form (Form 1-IC) that will accompany your licensure packet or registration application. Similarly, you may attest equivalency on the basis of completion of a professional education program that contained all six core curricular elements, if this occurred in the four years prior to the date of your attestation.
You must maintain documentation of the course content for four years subsequent to the date of your attestation, and you should also retain a photocopy of your completed attestation form. SED will undertake audits of those claiming completion of equivalent course work and if you are selected for such an audit, you will be asked to submit these items. If you are unable to acquire such documentation, you may not claim the equivalency exemption and must take SED/DOH approved course work.
For more information, visit NYSED at www.op.nysed.gov/training/icmemo.htm.
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.