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New Law Increases Access To Health Care

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New Law Increases Access To Health Care

Health Care Worker Bill Gets Legislative Green Light

Ministry of Health

Ontarians will soon have better access to health care and more choices in who provides it, as Bill 179 was passed Monday night with unanimous support.  Upon proclamation, the bill will give nurse practitioners, pharmacists, physiotherapists and other health professionals the freedom to provide a wider range of health care services.

The Regulated Health Professions Statute Law Amendment Act, 2009 will increase access to care for Ontarians by:

  • allowing nurse practitioners, pharmacists, physiotherapists, dietitians, midwives and medical radiation technologists to deliver more services than they are now qualified to provide.
  • changing the rules for administering, prescribing, dispensing, selling and using drugs in practice for chiropodists and podiatrists, dental hygienists, dentists, midwives, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, physiotherapists and respiratory therapists.
  • removing restrictions on X-rays that can be ordered by nurse practitioners and enabling physiotherapists to order X-rays for specific purposes; and
  • removing restrictions on the drugs nurse practitioners may prescribe, dispense, compound and sell.

Quick Facts

  • Bill 179 was introduced in the Ontario legislature on May 11, 2009.

Background Information

Additional Resources


“Allowing our health care professionals to make better use of their skills and talents will offer many more choices to patients and increase access to care. This legislation is a great step forward in delivering sustainable health care to all Ontarians.”

Deb Matthews

Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

“This is a good day for Ontarians. The expanded authority of NPs will serve the public well by opening further the access to primary care. NPs play a central role in all sectors of health care and the public must fully benefit from their expertise.”

Wendy Fucile

President, Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

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