Intervene in Practice

It is our role to regulate nursing practice with the interests of Nova Scotians as our top priority. One way we do this is to review, and if required, take action to address complaints we receive about the conduct, competence, health or behaviour of LPNs, RNs and NPs licenced to practice in our province.

Upholding Practice Standards

Licensed practical nurses, registered nurses and nurse practitioners are required to have the knowledge, skills, judgment, good health and good character to practise safely and effectively. We require that all licenced nurses in Nova Scotia adhere to standards for nursing practice and a code of ethics. Each LPN, RN and NP licenced to practice nursing in our province is required by NSCN to renew their licence every year demonstrating that they are qualified to practice safely, competently, ethically and compassionately.

We have the responsibility and authority to investigate if an allegation is made that a nurse does not meet our standards for conduct, competence, health or behaviour. If necessary, we can place limitations on the licence of a nurse or, in serious situations, remove them from practice.

Complaints Against a Nurse

It is our role as a regulator, to make sure that licensed practical nurses, registered nurses and nurse practitioners are meeting their standards and Codes of Ethics. While patients and members of the public are not responsible to determine if a nurse is safe and competent to practice, they can file a complaint with NSCN if they feel public and/or patient safety are at risk.

If we receive a complaint about the conduct, competence, health or behaviour of a nurse, we will review the allegations to determine if we need to investigate whether or not the nurse has met the standards expected of her/him. In serious situations, we are able to take immediate action to remove a nurse from practice in order to protect the public.

Our Role

Our role is to regulate the practice of LPNs, RNs and NPs in the best interests of the public, which gives us the responsibility and authority to protect the public if nursing standards are not upheld.

It is not our role as a regulator to simply punish nurses for poor practice. We strive to identify the root causes of poor practice and implement supports that improve practice with public protection as our top priority.

We believe that ensuring the public receives safe and quality nursing care is a shared responsibility amongst individual nurses, nursing employers, and NSCN. We all share the goal of ensuring that LPNs, RNs and NPs are competent to practice nursing in Nova Scotia and that they remain competent to do so.

Our Customer Service Commitment 

You can expect that we will treat you and your concerns with respect and courtesy while maintaining a confidential professional conduct process where all parties are treated fairly. We pride ourselves on finding new ways to improve our processes and are always open to receiving feedback and recommendations that allow us to do so. Click here for more information on our customer service commitment.