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Friday, Feb 3, 2023
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Hourly Cut For Nurses

Nursing students in California will have their clinical hours requirement waived so they can help with the immediate need for medical professionals amid spiking cases of COVID-19. Approximately 9,000 nursing students will be able to complete their programs short of normal hours needed, according to a statement from the state Department of Consumer Affairs. “We are sympathetic to the predicament nursing students are in during this time of uncertainty,” Kimberly Kirchmeyer, DCA director, said in the statement. “It was necessary to waive these requirements to meet the ongoing needs of California’s health care system and allow nursing students to graduate on time.” Other cuts to health care red tape include waiving examination and continuing education requirements for current health care licensees as well as reinstatement requirements for licensees that are inactive, retired or canceled, according to a statement from the DCA on March 31. Waivers don’t apply to licenses revoked or surrendered due to disciplinary proceedings, or those who retired, became inactive or cancelled status as a practicing physician following the initiation of a disciplinary hearing, DCA said. “We will continue to consider waivers based on the ongoing needs of California’s health care system. Our number one priority remains consumer protection. Each waiver approved will be reviewed with that lens in mind,” added Kirchmeyer in a separate statement. Waivers stem from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s state of emergency proclamation last month. The clinical hour requirement in direct patient care for nursing students went from 75 to 50 percent for those studying obstetrics, pediatrics, and mental health. That means only 50 percent of student clinical hours need to be face-to-face with patients rather than via simulation or lab training. Students in geriatrics and medical surgery can also switch to such training for 50 percent of their hours, the DCA said, but with stipulations — the medical school opting for this would need to prove that students were displaced from normal clinical hours and there is not an alternate site to complete hours in direct patient care.

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