New Law Permits Registered Nurses To Sign Death Certificates When They Are Authorized To Pronounce Death

January 26, 2005 Advisory

Effective October 1, 2004, registered nurses ("RNs") may sign the medical portion of a death certificate when they have been authorized to pronounce death of nursing home, hospice or home care patients. The new law, Public Act No. 04-255, An Act Concerning Funeral Directors and Vital Records, also permits advance practice nurses ("APRNs") and physician assistants ("PAs") to sign the medical portion of death certificates under certain circumstances.