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Registered nurses (RNs) in the United States are licensed health care professionals who can perform medical exams and other duties, and who can supervise and delegate activities to other professionals, such as licensed practical nurses and unlicensed assistive personnel. As physicians begin to specialize more and more, there will be an increased need for primary care in the United States that may be provided by RNs. 

This dataset identifies variations in state laws that govern the scope of practice for RNs. Specifically, it addresses what activities registered nurses are authorized to perform, whether they are authorized to delegate medical activities to other health care professionals, what activities they can and cannot delegate, who the RNs can delegate to, and what level of supervision is required for this delegation.  

This is a cross-sectional dataset displaying laws in effect as of August 1, 2015. To explore the variation in these laws click on the "Start Here" button below, or for a full description of a particular state click on the state itself. 

Related Resources  

Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action: 

National Council of State Boards of Nursing:

American Nurses Association:

American Association of Nurse Practitioners:



Did you know?

Registered nurses can formulate a nursing care plan in 32 states and the District of Columbia.

Registered nurses can dispense medication in four states.

Registed nurses can delegate medical activities in 48 states and the District of Columbia. 

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Map Legend: State Included in research.