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Joint Statement on Delegation

American Nurses Association (ANA) and the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) Position Statement

Date: 2019
Adopted By: ANA and NCSBN


In 2005, both the American Nurses Association (ANA) and the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) adopted papers on delegation. Both papers presented the same message: delegation is an essential nursing skill. This joint statement has been updated (2019) - The National Guidelines for Nursing Delegation,  reflecting an effort to standardize the nursing delegation process based on research findings and evidence in the literature and is applicable to all levels of nursing licensure (advanced practice registered nurse [APRN], registered nurse [RN], licensed practical/vocational nurse [LPN/VN]) where the nurse practice act (NPA) is silent.

The decision of whether or not to delegate or assign is based upon the RN’s judgement concerning the condition of the patient, the competence of all members of the nursing team and the degree of supervision that will be required of the RN if a task is delegated. The difference between delegation and assignment has been a source of debate for years and an attempt to distinguish between the two is captured in this document.

full position statement


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