Bipartisan Title VIII reauthorization bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives
On February 7th, 2017, Congressman David Joyce (R-OH) introduced the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act of 2017. He was joined by a bipartisan group of colleagues, including Reps. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Doris Matsui (D-CA), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Patrick Meehan (R-PA), and Kathy Castor (D-FL).
The legislation would reauthorize and improve nurse workforce programs under Title VIII, which supports nurses practicing in rural and medically underserved communities. It also targets advanced nursing education, diversity grants, National Nurse Service Corp, nurse faculty loan forgiveness, and geriatric education. ANA was instrumental in the introduction of this legislation, and will continue to push for legislation that bolsters nursing education across all levels.
ANA Releases Principles on Health Care System Reform
America's 3.6 million registered nurses are profoundly committed to ensuring and providing high quality care for all, and so is the American Nurses Association. ANA has outlined our principles for a comprehensive health care plan, which will guide our support on any proposed replacement for the Affordable Care Act. ANA opposes efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act without first putting forward a plan that embraces these principles.
Victory: Veterans & Nurses win Big with VA Rule!
The Department of Veterans Affairs recently announced an important change: Advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) -- including Nurse Practitioners, Certified Nurse Practitioners (NPs), Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNSs) and Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs) -- will now have full practice authority within the VA health system!
This is a win for veterans -- as well as the VA nurses who treat them -- and a regulation for which ANA has been advocating strongly for a number of years. This could not have been possible without the support of nurses across the country submitting public comments on this proposal.
Unfortunately, the rule excludes Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs), which is solely based on the VA's belief that there is no evidence of a shortage of anesthesiologists impacting access to care. ANA is committed to advancing full practice authority for all four APRN roles, and will continue our advocacy on behalf of CRNAs within the VA health care system.
President Obama Signs Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) Into Law
On July 22, 2016, President Obama signed bipartisan legislation that will provide increased access to treatment for patients facing opioid addiction.
Throughout the debate on this legislation in both the Senate and the House of Representatives, ANA actively sought to address barriers and expand access to treatment and prevention services. We are proud to report that the CARA includes key provisions that bolster nurses’ ability to help their patients suffering with substance use disorders.
The legislation marks significant progress and reflects the concerted effort ANA has put forth to advance nursing’s role in fighting the opioid crisis.
The legislation expands access to medication-assisted treatment by allowing Nurse Practitioners, for the first time, to prescribe buprenorphine in accordance with state law. The legislation authorizes this critical treatment option through fiscal year 2021.
About the Legislation:
- The Agreement amends the definition of qualifying practitioner (previously only physicians), to authorize nurse practitioners to prescribe buprenorphine (medication-assisted treatment).
- Following 30 first year -- NPs meet the criteria to receive an HHS waiver, nurse practitioners could increase their reach to write prescriptions for as many as 100 patients -- the same limit that applies to physicians who receive a waiver.
- The measure would authorize an HHS pilot program to expedite the hiring of qualified veterans as civilian health-care professionals, including emergency medical technicians (EMTs), paramedics, nurses, physical therapy assistants and physician assistants.
- The new authority for nurse practitioners would expire at the end of fiscal 2021.
- The legislation calls for a study that among other things asks the Secretary to consider what additional health providers are appropriate for the expanded authority.
Decoding 2016: The Future of Healthcare - July 19, 2016
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