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Virginia STs Title Protection Bill Signed into Law

Publish Date: April 14, 2014

On April 3, 2014 Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe signed SB 328 into law regarding surgical technologists and surgical assistants. The bill allows the Board of Medicine to register surgical technologist or surgical assistant applicants that present satisfactory evidence that s/he hold a current credential from the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting, all military surgical technologist training program graduates, and currently working surgical technologists and surgical assistants. Individuals not registered with the Board may not use the title “registered surgical technologist” or “registered surgical assistant”. It is important to note that this bill, which is effective as of July 1, 2014, is only title protection and not a requirement for certification.

Registration is the least restrictive form of regulation which carries no warranty of competency nor any assurance that the registrant has met any predetermined standards such as level of education or experience. Certain qualifications may apply, including but not limited to, education, experience or examination requirements.

Certification is an occupational designation that provides a confirmation of an individual’s qualification in a specific occupation or occupational designation. Generally, AORN supports education and certification of allied health care personnel working in the operating room, provided any bill language includes appropriate supervision language.