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NPAA Student Toolkit

Finishing your NP program and getting established as a practicing NP can be overwhelming. On this page you will find a number of resources, from form links to practice standards, funding models and beyond.

Professional Practice Documents

There are multiple documents available through CARNA which can aid the new nurse practitioner in their practice.

The following link will help you to locate the following: Prescribing Standards for NPs; Prescribing CDS for NPs; Scope of Practice for NPs; Entry Level Competencies for NPs in Canada; Medical Assistance in Dying Standards of Practice for NPs.

https://nurses.ab.ca/search?indexCatalogue=carna-search-index&searchQuery=nurse%20practitioner&wordsMode=AllWord

CNPE – Licensing Exam Process

The Canadian Nurse Practitioner Exam (CNPE) is a computer-administrated exam with between 170 and 190 questions. These questions can be stand alone or case-based. The exam is written over one session of four hours. There are usually two sitting of the exam annually, one in May and one in October.

Prior to applying for the exam, the graduate NP must obtain confirmation of their program completion for the academic institution conferring their MN-NP degree. There is a form available for this on the CARNA website.

Once CARNA receives this form and two pieces of government issued ID (one with a photo) to their email, nursepractitioners@nurses.ab.ca, they will set up the exam application for you and contact you with details by email.

Other options include the Adult Gerontology Primary Care NP Certification Exam (administered by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners), and the Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Certification Exam (administered by the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board).

There is a fact sheet for both exams on the Canadian Council of Registered Nurse Regulators website: http://www.ccrnr.ca/exams.html

NPAA Job Board subscription

One option to look for NP jobs is to subscribe to the NPAA Job Board. We would encourage that you sign up for this to have new postings sent to your email. Here is the link to subscribe: https://albertanps.com/category/jobs/

What you should know about funding models

One option to look for NP jobs is to subscribe to the NPAA Job Board. We would encourage that you sign up for this to have new postings sent to your email. Here is the link to subscribe: https://albertanps.com/category/jobs/

  • Employee of Alberta Health Services – As an NP, if AHS hires you into a role, you are paid a salary that is negotiated with AHS Human Resources or the supervising manager. There is currently little parity across the organization regarding benefits, shift differential etc. There is also a hiring freeze for Non-Unionized Exempt Employees, which NPs fall within at this time.
  • Employee of Primary Care Networks – A PCN may hire NPs from within their usual pooled budget. This usually means that a specific physician practice has decided to use their PCN fund allotment to hire an NP, and expect that NP to work within the role for which they have hired them.
  • Primary Care Network NP Support Program – A PCN may apply directly to Alberta Health for a position funded through this program. The program intends for NPs to work to their full scope and panel patients to themselves. However, the particular position may have a role that has been decided by the PCN Board, ie; Opioid Dependence Clinic, Women’s Health Clinic, Geriatric Clinic. The funding for the positions is separate from the PCN’s general income, and only provides for a set amount for salary and benefits. Some PCNs give that whole amount as the salary and absorb the benefit costs. Other PCNs reduce the offered salary and use the remaining granted funds to pay for all/part of the NPs benefits. Overhead and supply costs are not covered by this program, which must be absorbed either by the PCN or the physician’s office. At times this has been a barrier to full use of the role.
  • Private Third Party Pay – An NP has the right to open their own practice – they would need to obtain a business license etc. – and require payment from the individuals whom they see or can submit claims through third party insurance companies such as Blue Cross or Sunlife. Some insurance companies recognize NPs and have a method of compensation for their services. Other insurers do not, and only will accept billing by the NP as an RN, at a reduced rate.

Obtaining your NP license – College of Registered Nurses of Alberta (formerly known as CARNA)

Obtaining your NP license through the Alberta regulatory body is a series of steps and forms that require completion and submission. 

This is a link to the page which has the steps to apply: https://nurses.ab.ca/become-a-nurse/nurse-practitioner-applicants/initial-nurse-practitioner-applicantsOn the page there are links to the Confirmation of Program Completion Form, the Graduate Nurse Practitioner Application, and the Nurse Practitioner Transcript Request.

Obtaining your Practitioner Identification number (PracID)

A practice ID is obtained through Alberta Health directly. The PracID allows you to be identified as a licensed practitioner in the province, and authorizes you to refer for diagnostic imaging or for consults with medical practitioners. As a new NP registering for work within an organization or PCN, you will apply using the Allied Health – Referral only form, meaning you do not directly bill the Alberta Health Insurance Plan.

Instructions for completing the form are found here: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/ahcip-instructions-completing-ahc11234-practitioner-request-form.pdf

Complete form Practitioner/Allied Practitioners Information form AHC11234 found in the Health Professional Business Forms section.

Obtaining a Lab ID

All Practitioners require a laboratory ordering number in order to send samples to their local or provincial laboratory. This requires you to have a PracID, so you must wait until you have applied for and received your PracID from Alberta Health. Location information for your practice and an after hours contact to facilitate critical reporting are required. You will receive a unique Lab ID number for each of your practice locations

VAX/Lab ID for Dynalife – Edmonton

To obtain a laboratory ID, you must complete the form found at the following link: https://www.dynalife.ca/Portals/0/pdf/Pharmacists%20info/Attachment%20A%20Laboratory%20Information%20System%20Setup%20Request%20Form%20v2.pdf

The completed form is emailed to the laboratory data management team at copath.editors@dynalife.ca or can be faxed to 780-701-1721.

Lab Id for Alberta Precision Labs – Calgary

Complete the Healthcare provider Information Form found here:

https://www.albertaprecisionlabs.ca/hp/Page13842.aspx

The completed form can be emailed to DMPhysiciangroup@albertahealthservices.ca or faxed to APL Data Integrity at (403) 770-3235

Netcare and/or Connect Care Access

Netcare and Connect Care access are arranged through your employer. The Health Information Custodian will need to submit a User Registration Form for you to Alberta Netcare in order to register you as a user and obtain either a hard fob for sign in or a soft token on your cell phone. Netcare allows access to laboratory and diagnostic imaging results, hospital records (admissions and discharges), as well as some specialist reports.

Connect Care is being rolled out slowly across the province in Alberta Health Services. There will be opportunity in the future for community groups to also register for Connect Care access. Inquire with your planned employer to determine what training and registration processes are required.

Registering for the Alberta Tracked Prescription Program

Formerly known as the Triplicate Prescription program, the name how now been changed, as the triplicate version is no longer required and duplicate pads are now used.Nurse Practitioners must register with Tracked Prescription Program Alberta to order their first tracked prescription pads and to prescribe any Type 1 medications that are administered by the program.

The TPP information page is found here: http://www.cpsa.ca/tpp/ and contains a program guide, registration form to obtain your initial TPP pad, and re-order form for each additional pad. You will require your CARNA registration number. Once you have registered with the program, a single TPP pad will be sent to the address you specify on the registration form. For reorders or to report lost or stolen pads, follow the instructions on the TPP information page.

To become authorized to prescribe Methadone or Suboxone

To start, become familiar with the CARNA NP Prescribing Standards: https://nurses.ab.ca/docs/default-source/document-library/standards/prescribing-standards-for-nurse-practitioners.pdf?sfvrsn=c02ca1bf_12

Any NP managing opioid use disorder must follow the appropriate clinical standards and practice guidelines published through the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta, as well as the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Prior to initiating methadone treatment, the NP must complete a CARNA recognized prescribing course in opioid use disorder and complete at least two half days with an NP or physician who is experienced in treatment of Opioid Use Disorder.

One course that is approved for methadone prescribing is Methadone for Pain in Palliative Care, an online course available at www.methadone4pain.ca. Also available is the course through the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health: www.camh.ca, the British Columbia Centre on Substance Use program: www.bccsu.ca, and the Suboxone Training Program: www.suboxonecme.ca

Obtaining a Workers’ Compensation Board Billing Number

In order to submit any billing claims for services rendered for WCB clients, all NPs must have a WCB billing number. To obtain this number, complete the form found at the following link and submit either by fax to 780-498-7776/1-800-661-1993 or by mail (address is on the form).

https://www.wcb.ab.ca/assets/pdfs/providers/C724.pdf

Community Patient Attachment Registry/Community Information Integration

These two systems work to integrate community care with provincial databases. They identify individuals with a particular community provider, and communicate that to the provincial system. This allows health care workers to see that you have primary provider responsibility for a particular individual in the community. It also uploads some basic information from your Electronic Medical Record to Netcare, so other clinicians can see when you saw the individual, and why they were seen. Both systems work to integrate care across the care continuum. If you are working in a community clinic, the office manager should register you as a provider within their clinic, so that your role and responsibilities are clear on CPAR/CII.


If you have any other suggestions for this toolkit, please send your recommendations to secretary@albertanps.com

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