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Polk County Advanced Practice Nurses Association

AANP Federal Legislative Update

Posted almost 6 years ago by Michelle Rampersad

April 15, 2013  

Administration Budget Maintains Nurse Education Funding in 2014
The President’s budget proposes $251 million for Title VIII nursing education programs, including a $20 million increase in funding for Advanced Education Nursing.  These are the same amounts the administration and AANP sought for fiscal year 2013. Not included in the President’s budget is $20 million sought by AANP and other nursing groups to support nurse-managed health clinics.

The administration’s proposal becomes the third part of negotiations between the House and Senate after each chamber passed a significantly different 2014 budget resolution in March.  Those talks could include a “grand bargain” with tax and entitlement reforms as Congress prepares to face another vote on raising the national debt limit this summer.

AANP Urges House Committees to Adopt Quality-Based Medicare Payments
In comments regarding a permanent fix to Medicare’s sustainable growth rate (SGR), AANP urged two key House committees to address payments for services provided to patients based on the service itself and not the professional providing such services.  AANP also urged the committees to be inclusive of all providers functioning at their full scope of preparation and licensure to ensure patient needs are met.

AANP used this opportunity to remind the committees that multiple barriers in current Medicare law drive up costs and interfere with quality patient care.  The association pointed to requirements for physician certification of patient eligibility for home health service and some durable medical equipment as well as physicians conducting admission examinations and all routine visits in skilled nursing facilities as examples.

Leaders are optimistic that a Medicare payment reform bill will come to the House floor this summer before Congress adjourns for its August recess.  The President’s fiscal year 2014 budget also calls for repealing the SGR payment formula.

Senate Could Vote Soon on Tavenner Nomination
Following a relatively smooth Senate Finance Committee confirmation hearing April 10, the Senate may vote by the end of the month on Marilyn Tavenner’s nomination to become the first confirmed administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) since 2006.  AANP and other nursing groups have supported Tavenner’s nomination to head the agency.

Tavenner was applauded by members of both parties at last week’s committee hearing for her leadership of the agency while serving as its acting chief for more than a year.  The bipartisan support in committee may smooth the way for a vote on her confirmation in the full Senate.

As always, your federal team is here to answer your questions. Please feel free to contact any of us at FederalPolicy@aanp.org.

Federal Policy Team members:
MaryAnne Sapio, VP Federal Government Affairs
Debra Swan, Associate VP Federal Government Affairs
Jan Towers, Sr. Policy Advisor
Dave Mason, Federal Consultant