Code Section Group

Health and Safety Code - HSC

DIVISION 107. STATEWIDE HEALTH PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT [127000 - 130070]

  ( Division 107 added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 415, Sec. 9. )

PART 3. HEALTH PROFESSIONS DEVELOPMENT [127750 - 128585]

  ( Part 3 added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 415, Sec. 9. )

CHAPTER 5.  Health Professions Education Foundation Programs [128330 - 128585]

  ( Heading of Chapter 5 amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 149, Sec. 4. )

ARTICLE 2. California Registered Nurse Education Program [128375 - 128401]
  ( Article 2 added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 415, Sec. 9. )

128375.
  

(a)  The Legislature hereby finds and declares that an adequate supply of professional nurses is critical to assuring the health and well-being of the citizens of California, particularly those who live in medically underserved areas.

(b)  The Legislature further finds that changes in the health care system of this state have increased the need for more highly skilled nurses. These changes include advances in medical technology and pharmacology, that necessitate the use of more highly skilled nurses in acute care facilities. Further, the containment of health care costs has led to increased reliance on home health care and outpatient services and to a higher proportion of more acutely ill patients in acute care facilities. Long-term care facilities also need more highly educated nursing personnel. Both shifts require a larger number of skilled nursing personnel.

(c)  The Legislature further finds and declares that in nursing, as in other professions, certain populations are underrepresented. The Legislature also finds and declares that it is especially important that nursing care be provided in a way that is sensitive to the sociocultural variables that affect a person’s health. The Legislature recognizes that the financial burden of obtaining a baccalaureate degree is considerable and that persons from families lacking adequate financial resources may need financial assistance to complete a baccalaureate degree.

(d)  The Legislature further finds and declares that approximately 54.1 percent of all Californians live in rural and urban areas that have been designated underserved. The shortage of professional nurses in these areas makes it more difficult for those citizens to obtain health care and more difficult to attract and retain other health care professionals to those areas.

(e)  The Legislature further finds and declares that since July 1, 1989, the Registered Nurse Education Fund has collected five million two hundred eight thousand five hundred seventy-four dollars ($5,208,574) to support the education of professional nurses and nursing students in California.

(f)  The Legislature further finds and declares that since 1990, the Health Professions Education Foundation has awarded over four million dollars ($4,000,000) in scholarship and loan repayment to 754 nursing students and nurses in California.

(g)  The Legislature further finds and declares that 107 award recipients are baccalaureate of science degree prepared nurses who have made a commitment to practice in medically underserved areas of California for a period of two years in exchange for loan repayment.

(h)  The Legislature further finds that 485 of the award recipients are baccalaureate of science degree nursing students. Since 1990, 199 nurses have completed their contractual obligation with the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development.

(i)  The Legislature further finds and declares that, since 1994, 112 associate degree nursing scholarship awards have been made to students who have signed a contract with the office to complete a baccalaureate of science degree within five years of completing their associate degree. Six students have completed the articulations pilot program.

(j)  The Legislature further finds that recipients of the foundation’s financial assistance program have come from very diverse backgrounds. Scholarships have been awarded to African-Americans, American Indians, Asian-Pacific Islanders, Caucasians, Hispanic-Americans, and other individuals.

(Amended by Stats. 2000, Ch. 135, Sec. 106. Effective January 1, 2001.)

128380.
  

It is the intent of the Legislature to accomplish the following:

(a)  Assure an adequate supply of appropriately trained professional nurses.

(b)  Encourage persons from populations that are currently underrepresented in the nursing profession to enter that profession.

(c)  Encourage professional nurses to work in medically underserved areas.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 415, Sec. 9. Effective January 1, 1996.)

128385.
  

(a) There is hereby created the Registered Nurse Education Program within the Health Professions Education Foundation. Persons participating in this program shall be persons who agree in writing prior to graduation to serve in an eligible county health facility, an eligible state-operated health facility, a health workforce shortage area, or a California nursing school, as designated by the director of the office. Persons agreeing to serve in eligible county health facilities, eligible state-operated health facilities, or health workforce shortage areas, and master’s or doctoral students agreeing to serve in a California nursing school may apply for scholarship or loan repayment. The Registered Nurse Education Program shall be administered in accordance with Article 1 (commencing with Section 128330), except that all funds in the Registered Nurse Education Fund shall be used only for the purpose of promoting the education of registered nurses and related administrative costs. The Health Professions Education Foundation shall make recommendations to the director of the office concerning both of the following:

(1) A standard contractual agreement to be signed by the director and any student who has received an award to work in an eligible county health facility, an eligible state-operated health facility, or in a health workforce shortage area that would require a period of obligated professional service in the areas of California designated by the California Healthcare Workforce Policy Commission as deficient in primary care services. The obligated professional service shall be in direct patient care. The agreement shall include a clause entitling the state to recover the funds awarded plus the maximum allowable interest for failure to begin or complete the service obligation.

(2) Maximum allowable amounts for scholarships, educational loans, and loan repayment programs in order to assure the most effective use of these funds.

(b) Applicants may be persons licensed as registered nurses, graduates of associate degree nursing programs prior to entering a program granting a baccalaureate of science degree in nursing, or students entering an entry-level master’s degree program in registered nursing or other registered nurse master’s or doctoral degree program approved by the Board of Registered Nursing. Priority shall be given to applicants who hold associate degrees in nursing.

(c) Registered nurses and students shall commit to teaching nursing in a California nursing school for five years in order to receive a scholarship or loan repayment for a master’s or doctoral degree program.

(d) Not more than 5 percent of the funds available under the Registered Nurse Education Program shall be available for a pilot project designed to test whether it is possible to encourage articulation from associate degree nursing programs to baccalaureate of science degree nursing programs. Persons who otherwise meet the standards of subdivision (a) shall be eligible for educational loans when they are enrolled in associate degree nursing programs. If these persons complete a baccalaureate of science degree nursing program in California within five years of obtaining an associate degree in nursing and meet the standards of this article, these loans shall be completely forgiven.

(e) As used in this section, “eligible county health facility” means a county health facility that has been determined by the office to have a nursing vacancy rate greater than noncounty health facilities located in the same health facility planning area.

(f) As used in this section, “eligible state-operated health facility” means a state-operated health facility that has been determined by the office to have a nursing vacancy rate greater than noncounty health facilities located in the same health facility planning area.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 259, Sec. 9. Effective January 1, 2007.)

128390.
  

The funds made available pursuant to this article shall be used as specified in Article 14 (commencing with Section 69795) of Chapter 2 of Part 42 of the Education Code, except that the funds shall be used only for the purpose of assisting students in completing nursing programs meeting the standards specified in subdivision (j) of Section 69799 of the Education Code.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 415, Sec. 9. Effective January 1, 1996.)

128395.
  

In developing this program, the Health Professions Education Foundation shall solicit the advice of representatives of the Board of Registered Nurses, the California Nurses Association and other professional nurse organizations, the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges, the Chancellor of the California State University, and the California Association of Hospitals and Health Systems. The foundation shall solicit the advice of representatives who reflect the demographic diversity of California.

(Amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 149, Sec. 13. Effective July 22, 1999.)

128400.
  

There is hereby established in the State Treasury the Registered Nurse Education Fund. All money in the fund shall be used for the purposes specified in the California Registered Nurse Education Program established pursuant to this article. This fund shall receive money collected pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 2815 and Section 2815.1 of the Business and Professions Code.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 384, Sec. 1. (SB 271) Effective January 1, 2014.)

128401.
  

(a) The Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development shall adopt regulations establishing the statewide Associate Degree Nursing (A.D.N.) Scholarship Program.

(b) Scholarships under the program shall be available only to students in counties determined to have the most need. Need in a county shall be established based on consideration of all the following factors:

(1) Counties with a registered nurse-to-population ratio equal to or less than 500 registered nurses per 100,000 individuals.

(2) County unemployment rate.

(3) County level of poverty.

(c) A scholarship recipient shall be required to complete, at a minimum, an associate degree in nursing and work in a medically underserved area in California upon obtaining his or her license from the Board of Registered Nursing.

(d) The Health Professions Education Foundation shall consider the following factors when selecting recipients for the A.D.N. Scholarship Program:

(1) An applicant’s economic need, as established by the federal poverty index.

(2) Applicants who demonstrate cultural and linguistic skills and abilities.

(e) The program shall be funded from the Registered Nurse Education Fund established pursuant to Section 128400 and administered by the Health Professions Education Foundation within the office. The Health Professions Education Foundation shall allocate a portion of the moneys in the fund for the program established pursuant to this section, in addition to moneys otherwise allocated pursuant to this article for scholarships and loans for associate degree nursing students.

(f) No additional staff or General Fund operating costs shall be expended for the program.

(g) The Health Professions Education Foundation may accept private or federal funds for purposes of the A.D.N. Scholarship Program.

(h) The Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development shall post A.D.N. Scholarship Program statistics and updates on its Internet Web site.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 384, Sec. 2. (SB 271) Effective January 1, 2014.)

HSCHealth and Safety Code - HSC2