NEW JERSEY REGISTER
VOLUME 39, ISSUE 24
ISSUE DATE: DECEMBER 17, 2007
LAW AND PUBLIC SAFETY
DIVISION OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS
NEW JERSEY BOARD OF NURSING
Proposed Amendments: N.J.A.C. 13:37-1.2 and 1.3
Application for Establishment of a New Program in Nursing; Provisional Accreditation
Authorized By: State Board of Nursing, George Hebert, Executive Director.
Authority: N.J.S.A. 45:11-24.
Calendar Reference: See Summary below for explanation of exception to calendar requirement.
Proposal Number: PRN 2007-375.
Submit written comments by February 15, 2008 to:
George Hebert, Executive Director
State Board of Nursing
Post Office Box 45010
Newark, New Jersey 07101
The agency proposal follows:
Summary The Board of Nursing (Board) has recently seen a large increase in the number of licensed practical nurse education programs applying for Board accreditation. In order to ensure that these programs are providing the appropriate level of attention to their students during the initial years they exist, the Board proposes to amend N.J.A.C. 13:37-1.2 and 1.3 to require that licensed practical nurse education programs applying for accreditation admit no more than 40 students in a calendar year. These amendments will not affect licensed practical nurse education programs that are already provisionally accredited or accredited. The Board is also amending N.J.A.C. 13:37-1.2(e)1 to clarify that the term "class" refers to a graduating class of students and not a single course taken by students. The Board has determined that the comment period for this proposal will be 60 days; therefore, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 1:30-3.3(a)5, this proposal is excepted from the rulemaking calendar requirement.
The Board believes that the proposed amendments will have a positive impact on students in licensed practical nurse education programs. The Board has recently been inundated with applications to establish new practical nurse education programs, many of which propose to enroll large numbers of students. These programs have difficulties in providing students with qualified education. Limiting the number of students in a program ensures that students are provided a level of attention that prepares them to pass licensing examinations and provide patient care in the future. This limitation is particularly important during the first years a program is in existence and is establishing the educational procedures it will follow. The Board believes that it is possible that the proposed amendments could exacerbate the nursing shortage by limiting the number of individuals who complete licensed practical nursing programs and become eligible for licensure. This impact will be slight, as the limitation is only imposed for the period during which a program is on provisional accreditation. The Board believes that this slight impact is outweighed by the substantial interest in ensuring that students in these programs receive an adequate education. The Board does not anticipate that the proposed amendments will have any other impact on society.
The proposed amendments may have an economic impact on institutions seeking provisional accreditation for licensed practical nurse education programs as these programs will have to limit the number of students they may admit in a calendar year while on provisional accreditation. Limiting the number of students in such programs will limit a programs' income. The Board does not believe that the proposed amendments will have any other economic impact.
Federal Standards Statement
A Federal standards analysis is not required because there are no Federal laws or standards applicable to the proposed amendments.
The Board believes that there may be a small, short-term impact on teaching positions in licensed practice nurse education programs on provisional accreditation. These programs will have to limit the number of students they may admit in a calendar year while on provisional accreditation, which could impact the number of teachers needed by these programs while they are on provisional accreditation. The Board does not believe that the proposed amendments will increase or decrease the number of jobs in New Jersey in any other way.
Agriculture Industry Impact
The Board does not believe that the proposed amendments will have any impact on the agriculture industry of this State.
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis
Since licensed practical nurse education programs are individually accredited by the Board, they may be considered "small businesses" under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (the Act), N.J.S.A. 52:14B-16 et seq. The economic impact on small businesses is the same as on all businesses as set forth in the Economic Impact statement above. The Board does not believe that licensed practical nurse education programs will need to employ any professional services to comply with the requirements of the proposed amendments. The proposed amendments do not impose reporting or recordkeeping requirements, but do impose compliance requirements as detailed in the Summary above. As the proposed amendments are intended to provide students in licensed practical nurse education with adequate attention during their education, which will facilitate the students' ability to provide safe and effective care as licensed practical nurses after graduation, the Board believes that the provisions of the proposed amendments should be applied to all new licensed practical nurse education programs regardless of size.
Smart Growth Impact
The Board does not anticipate that the proposed amendment will have any impact on the achievement of smart growth and implementation of the State Development and Redevelopment Plan, otherwise known as the State Plan.
Full text of the proposal follows (additions indicated in boldface thus):
13:37-1.2 Application for establishment of a new program in nursing
(a)-(d) (No change.)
(e) After receiving permission to pursue the development of a new program, the educational institution shall submit to the Board the following items no later than four months prior to the anticipated start date of the program:
1. The number of students to be admitted to each of the first four graduating classes after establishment of the program. Licensed practical nurse programs shall not admit more than 40 students per calendar year;
2.-9. (No change.)
(f)-(g) (No change.)
13:37-1.3 Provisional accreditation
(a) (No change.)
(b) A licensed practical nurse education program granted provisional accreditation shall not admit more than 40 students per calendar year.
Recodify existing (b)-(f) as (c)-(g) (No change in text.)