MUÑOZ BILL ALLOWING APNS TO DETERMINE CAUSE OF DEATH ADVANCES

Legislation Assembly Deputy Republican Leader Nancy F. Muñoz sponsors that will allow an attending advanced nurse practitioner (APN) to determine their patients’ cause of death today won General Assembly approval.

“As the patient’s primary treating health professional, the APN is often with the patient at time of death which is a very emotional time for family members,” said Muñoz, R-Union, Morris and Somerset. “APNs are trained professionals who are licensed to treat, order tests, make referrals to surgeons, diagnose and manage long-term illnesses. It’s not only appropriate, it’s common sense to allow the attending APN to make such a call. Doing so in a timely manner will help the family move forward.”

The bill, A-1319/S-1152, allows an APN to determine the cause of death and execute the death certification of a patient when the nurse is the patient’s primary caregiver and the collaborating physician is not available. The measure cleared the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee last month. It now heads to the Senate for consideration.