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Assisted Living: Registered Nurse Medication Delegation

The role of an RN (registered nurse) in an assisted living facility may vary. They often are responsible for:

  • Giving residents medications.
  • Assessing residents.
  • Developing individual care plans for residents.
  • Training staff.
  • Developing policies and rules.
  • Supervising staff.
  • Performing health screenings.
  • Reviewing how medications are given.

Sometimes, an RN may assign any of the above duties to other staff members. This is called delegating. All RNs should have experience delegating tasks and supervising staff members. When tasks aren't delegated correctly, residents may be at risk.

RNs who delegate tasks must follow all regulations. This includes training, evaluation, supervision, and documentation (Wis. Admin. Code § N 6 – Standards of Practice for Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses).

Can an RN delegate injections?

Yes, as long as a facility allows RNs to assign tasks. RNs must follow the Nurse Practice Act and certain regulations.

In a community-based residential facility, RNs can delegate if they:

  • Assign tasks that match a staff member's skill level.
  • Provide assistance to staff.
  • Observe staff doing the delegated task.
  • Evaluate if staff did the task correctly.

How much supervision is needed when RNs delegate?

RNs should use their judgment when deciding how much supervision is needed. They should also consider:

Last revised January 13, 2023