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Clinical Practice > Women's Health Nursing

Frequently Asked Questions

Always keep in mind that you are responsible for knowing your Board of Nursing rules and the policies of your workplace. The tasks that you perform under your nursing license must also be in compliance with the policies of your workplace. Your workplace may limit you from performing tasks that are allowed by the Board of Nursing, but your workplace cannot require you to do more than the Board of Nursing allows.
When a task is allowed via additional training under Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)], refer to this rule located in the Board of Nursing Administrative Rules. Keep in mind that tasks allowed with the additional training described in these rules must be documented with a written plan for maintaining competence and that the plan must be updated at least annually.

Regarding amniotomy (also known as "breaking the water")

  • Amniotomy is not within the scope of practice for an RN, LPN, or LNA. It is within the scope of practice of a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM), and it may be within the scope of practice of an Advance Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP), depending on that APRN's area of licensure.

Regarding epidurals

  • It is not the scope of any type of nurse except for a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) to inject medication directly into an epidural line. (Winter 1996)
  • It is within RN scope to inject neuroaxials directly into epidural line of non-pregnant post-operative patients provided competencies are met. (April, 2013)
  • An RN may adjust the rate of medication delivered through a mechanical pump into an existing epidural line. Refer to Nur Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)] to determine the need for a physician, anesthesiologist or CRNA to be in the building. (Aug 1998)
  • An LPN may adjust the rate of medication delivered through a mechanical pump into an existing epidural line. Refer to Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)] to determine the need for a physician, anesthesiologist or CRNA to be in the building. (Aug 1998)

Regarding Spiral Electrodes (also known as Fetal Scalp Electrodes)

  • An RN may apply spiral electrodes for fetal monitoring provided that the RN has received additional training in these procedures and follows the special procedures regulations set forth in Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)].

Regarding Vaginal Prostaglandin Administration

  • An RN may administer vaginal prostaglandin to patients receiving prostaglandin for the purpose of delivering a fetal demise provided that the RN follows the special procedures regulations set forth in Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)].

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Regarding pelvic and bi-Manual examinations

  • An RN may perform these examinations provided the RN has received additional training in these procedures and follows the special procedure regulations set forth in Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)].

Regarding STD Specimens

  • An RN may perform specimen collections for STDs, provided that the RN has received additional training in these procedures and follows the special procedure guidelines set forth in Nur 404.12 [formerly Nur 305.01 (c) & (d)].

Regarding diaphragm fitting

  • An RN may fit diaphragms, but keep in mind that a diaphragm requires a prescription which must be provided by someone with prescriptive authority such as an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) or a physician, and the provider who writes the prescription is responsible for confirming the fit of the diaphragm in order to be able to write the prescription.

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New Hampshire Board of Nursing
121 South Fruit Street   |  Concord, NH 03301
Nursing (603) 271-2323  |  Nursing Assistant (603) 271-6282
Fax (603) 271-6605