The definitions in this section apply throughout WAC 246-840-201
unless the context clearly requires otherwise.
(1) Active nursing practice
means engagement in paid, unpaid, or volunteer activity performing acts requiring a nursing license as described in RCW 18.79.040
, or 18.79.060
. Active nursing practice may include working as a nursing administrator, nursing quality manager, nursing policy officer, public health nurse, parish nurse, home health nurse, nursing educator, nursing consultant, nursing regulator or any practice requiring nursing knowledge and a nursing license.
means the affirmation by signature of the nurse indicating compliance with the standards and terms of the continuing competency requirements.
(3) Continuing competency
is the ongoing ability of a nurse to maintain, update and demonstrate sufficient knowledge, skills, judgment, and qualifications necessary to practice safely and ethically in a designated role and setting in accordance with the scope of nursing practice. A nurse achieves continuing competency through active practice, self-assessment and reflection, and continuing nursing education.
(4) Continuing nursing education
refers to systematic professional learning experiences obtained after initial licensure designed to augment the knowledge, skills, and judgment of nurses and enrich nurses' contributions to quality health care and his or her pursuit of professional career goals. The education hours should relate to the nurse's area of professional practice or areas identified through self-assessment and reflection for professional growth and development. There are various types of continuing nursing education activities. Some involve participant attendance where the pace of the activity is determined by the provider who plans and schedules the activity. Others are designed for completion by the learner, independently, at the learner's own pace and at a time of the learner's choice. Continuing nursing education hours may be obtained through mentorship, certification, presentations, and specialty certification.
(5) Review period
is three full licensing renewal cycles. For purposes of a compliance audit, the review period will be the three years preceding the audit form due date.
(6) Self-assessment and reflection
means the process of the nurse assessing his or her active nursing practice to determine strengths and opportunities for new learning. The purpose of this process is for the nurse to assess and reflect on:
(a) Making patient safety a priority;
(b) Familiarity with current laws and rules related to nursing practice; and
(c) Existing knowledge and skills (e.g., infection prevention techniques, open communication, and clinical competency). Nurses complete the self-assessment and reflection process when selecting education and training opportunities in his or her nursing careers.
(7) Technical assistance
means help provided by commission members or staff based on the needs of the nurse to comply with rules and regulations.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 18.79.010 and 18.79.110. 10-24-047, § 246-840-202, filed 11/24/10, effective 1/1/11.]