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TexLaw, Attorney
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Experience:  Lead trial/International commercial attorney licensed 11 yrs
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In New York State is an RN legally responsible for the practice

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In New York State is an RN legally responsible for the practice of an LPN who works in her office is the doctors are present

Thank you for your question. I will need to conduct some research to find the answer, but I wanted to let you know that we have picked up your question and will be addressing it shortly.

You are saying that there is a doctor who is in charge of the practice who is also present in the office where the RN and the LPN are working?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


OK. Please stand by for an answer. I'm looking at the law.
The New York guide to nursing, published by the NYS Education Department, provides the following:

Licensed Practical Nurses function by law in a dependent role at the direction of the RN or other select authorized health care providers. Under such direction, Licensed Practical Nurses may administer medications, provide nursing treatments, and gather patient measurements, signs, and symptoms that can be used by the RN in making decisions about the nursing care of specific patients. However, they may not function independent of direction.

Inappropriate use of LPNs may expose agencies to potential litigation, the delegating RN to a potential charge of unprofessional conduct for inappropriate delegation of professional responsibilities [see Regent Rules 29.1(b)(10)], and the LPN to a charge of acting outside the scope of nursing as a Licensed Practical Nurse [see Regents Rules 29.1(b)(9)].

However, where there is a physician who is overseeing the RN, the physician is also potentially liable for his/her lack of oversight. Nevertheless, primary responsibility lays with the RN.

Please let me know if you need further answer or have follow up questions. Please also consider rating my answer positively so that I am compensated for my work on this question.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you,


I just want to clarify that even if the physicians have not hired the RN in a supervisory capacity as long as the RN and LPN are practicing in the same office at the same time the RN is liable for the practice and oversight of the practice of the LPN correct?

Yes. It's not about who hire who, its about the work being performed and the fact that you are working together. When the RN is working at the same place, he/she must oversee the LPN, and shares the responsibility with the physician who hired both. However, when the RN is present, the primary responsibility goes to the RN.
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