Use of Non-Patient Specific Standing Orders for HIV and Hepatitis C Testing

Memorandum To Health Care Providers Regarding Non-patient Specific Orders

In 2014 New York State (NYS) Education Law Article 131 (Section 6527, subdivision 6 and Section 6909, subdivision 4) regarding the use of non-patient specific orders for registered professional nurses (RNs) was amended to include tests that detect the presence of the hepatitis C virus (HCV). This law permits licensed physicians and certified nurse practitioners to issue non-patient specific orders for RNs who may be providing HCV testing to patients.

Procedures that can be performed by RNs pursuant to a non-patient specific order:

  • HCV testing
  • HIV testing
  • Administration of specified immunizations
  • Anaphylactic treatment medications
  • Tuberculin PPD tests
  • Emergency treatment of opioid overdose

Find more information about non-patient specific orders:

Public Health Highlights

The expanded role of the RN in public health efforts to screen individuals for HIV and TB was made possible through the use of non-patient specific orders. The addition of HCV testing to the list provides an opportunity to increase the number of persons aware of their hcv status and link them to appropriate medical care and treatment. The NYS Department of Health, AIDS Institute, continues to work to control HIV, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted diseases. Recent legislative and regulatory changes that have assisted in the effort to control HIV and HCV include:

  • In 2014 New York State called for an end to the HIV epidemic. This can be achieved through identification of individuals infected with HIV, prevention of HIV - including the use of PrEP and PEP in individuals at risk, and enhancing linkage and retention in care for HIV-positive individuals
  • The rapid advances in medications targeting HCV have resulted in new, more effective HCV treatments, making a cure possible and increasing the urgency of identifying the many New Yorkers infected with HCV. The NYS Hepatitis C Testing Law requires the offer of an HCV screening test to all persons 18 years of age and older, pregnant persons, and persons under the age of 18 with a risk. These new requirements align New York State with the current Centers for Disease Control and Prevention HCV screening recommendations.
  • Amendments to the HIV Testing Law were enacted in 2014 and 2015 to minimize barriers to HIV testing for the general public, as well as those at risk for acquiring HIV infection. Simplified consent for HIV testing eliminates the need to obtain written consent to an HIV test via a general medical consent form or an HIV-specific consent form

We urge you to visit the Department of Health’s website to learn more about Hepatitis C and HIV testing. For questions related to HIV testing email For questions related to Hepatitis C Testing Law email