Medical Law & Ethics Chapter 3


Documentation, usually from a professional organization, that an individual has met certain requirements set forth by that organization.


An agreement in which one state recognizes the licensing procedure of another sate, considers it valid, and grants a license to practice. Sometimes referred to as reciprocity.

licensed practical nurse (LPN) or licensed vocational nurse (LVN)

Person who has graduated from a 1-year practical nurse vocational or college program and has passed the state licensing examination for practical or vocational nurses. An LPN or LVN works under the direct supervision of a registered nurse (RN) or a physician.


Legal permission, granted by state statues, to perform specific acts; for instance, a physician is licensed to practice medicine.

medical assistant (ma)

Person who assists the physician in both administrative and clinical duties; education varies from on-the-job training to 2 years in an accredited program for medical assisting. May be certified (CMA) or registered (RMA) by successfully passing the professional organization examination.

medical laboratory technician (MLT)

Person who has graduated from a certificate program or associate degree program and then works under the supervision of a physician or medical technologist in a laboratory. May be certified by a professional organization examination.

medical technologist (MT)

Person who has graduated from a 2- to 4-year college or university program in medical technology that includes 1 year of clinical training in the laboratory.

medical transcriptionist

Person who may, or may not, have formal training; will have superior keyboarding and grammar skills; transcribes medical dictation, on- or off-site.

nurse practitioner (NP)

Nurse practitioner is an RN (usually with a bachelor's degree) who has successfully completed additional training in an NP program at the masters or doctoral level.

physician assistant (PA)

Person with 1 to 4 years of education in an approved program for PAs; a PA works under supervision of a physician.

professional coder

Coders are responsible for the correct application of procedures, supplies, and diagnostic codes used for billing professional medical services.


An agreement by which two states recognize the licensing procedures of each other, consider them valid, and grant licenses to practice based on the other state's licensure. In some states, it is referred to as endorsement.

registered nurse (RN)

Person who has graduated from a 2-year associate degree, 3-year diploma, or 4- to 5-year bachelor's degree program and passed the state licensing examination for RNs. An RN works under the direction of a physician.


An entry in an official record listing names of persons satisfying certain requirements and level of education.