Keeping You Connected to Legislation Affecting Nursing
Advocacy is an important part of the strategic plan for AMSN. Every month in this newsletter, and ongoing behind the scenes, we take on the issues you care about most. Whether the topic concerns healthy practice environments, safe staffing ratios, patient rights, or medication administering, we will make sure you are in the know. You will also have the opportunity to engage your elected officials as they vote on bills that will have an impact on you, your patients, and everything in between.
We have included just some of the recent legislative news items for our med-surg nursing community for March. We encourage you to read and get involved where you can to effect change.
State of The Union
Several health care issues important to medical-surgical nurses appeared in the President’s State of the Union address on Feb. 4. The President pledged to “reduce the price of health care and prescription drugs.” He took credit for having “eliminated the very unpopular Obamacare individual mandate penalty” and for enacting “right to try” legislation and “unprecedented legislation to confront the opioid crisis.” As for prescription drugs, he said, “I am asking Congress to pass legislation that finally takes on the problem of global freeloading and delivers fairness and price transparency for American patients, finally. We should also require drug companies, insurance companies, and hospitals to disclose real prices to foster competition and bring costs way down.” He also said his 2020 budget would propose $500 million over 10 years to reduce and cure childhood cancer. See and read the text here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/sotu/
HR 728 for Safe Staffing
Members are responding to the AMSN advocacy campaign supporting safe staffing for patients by encouraging U.S. Representatives to cosponsor HR 728, legislation reauthorizing Title 8 nurse workforce development programs. https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/728 More than 100 members have responded to AMSN appeals on the Hub and Facebook to contact their legislators in Washington. With the involvement of AMSN and many nursing organizations, 55lawmakers from both parties have cosponsored this important legislation. But the job is not finished –they need to hear from youtoday! To take actioneasily and conveniently, click this link with resources from AMSN. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1exr1Me48UjtfS0qF7u_IfqQZayJ2efXaJVkU...
Dems Response to the State of the Union
Health care also figured prominently in the Democratic response to the State of the Union, which was presented by Stacey Abrams, former Georgia House minority leader and a 2018 candidate for Georgia governor. “Rather than suing todismantle the Affordable Care Act, as Republican Attorneys General have, our leaders must protect the progress we’ve made and commit to expanding health care and lowering costs for everyone.... In this great nation, Americans are skipping blood pressure pills, forced to choose between buying medicine or paying rent. Maternal mortality rates show that mothers, especially black mothers, risk death to give birth. And in 14 states, including my home state where a majority want it, our leaders refuse to expand Medicaid, which could save rural hospitals, economies, and lives.”See and read the text here. https://www.c-span.org/video/?457451-1/stacey-abrams-delivers-state-unio...