AMSN Hill Day:
CEO’s July Message for the AMSN Blog.
On June 27th, the AMSN Legislative Committee visited Washington, D.C. and members of Congress to advocate for legislative issues important to medical-surgical nurses. This visit was AMSN’s second ‘Hill Day’ and first one in person because our 2021 Hill Day was completely virtual due to COVID-19. Some committee members had visits with congressional staff in person and others held Zoom meetings with their state legislators.
AMSN’s Legislative Consultant, Jim Twaddell, helped committee members prepare for these meetings and his team scheduled all the meetings for our AMSN representatives. We had 35 meetings across 11 states and 14 congressional districts with 14 state legislators from the House of Representatives and 21 from the Senate.
We focused on three legislative priorities based on AMSN’s legislative agenda. The three priorities we advocated for were:
- The Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act (H.R. 1195 and S. 4182) helps ensure that health care workers have the basic workplace protections they need and deserve. Specifically, the Act compels the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to issue an interim occupational safety and health standard that requires certain employers to take actions to protect workers and other personnel from workplace violence. The House of Representatives passed the bill in April 2021. AMSN urges Members of Congress to cosponsor the bill.
- The John Lewis Equality in Medicare and Medicaid Treatment (EMMT) Act of 2022 (H.R. 7755 and S. 4067) is crucial to ensuring that health equity is meaningfully addressed in policy. Specifically, the Act directs the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) to consult with experts on health disparities, such as the Office of Minority Health of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, and the Office on Women’s Health, on developing new payment models that consider social determinants of health (SDOH), lower costs, and improve access to care. AMSN urges Members of Congress to cosponsor the bill.
- Funding Requests: AMSN, as a member of the Nursing Community Coalition (NCC), a coalition of 62 nursing specialty associations, supports funding requests as set annually by the NCC. These funding requests include:
a. The Nursing Workforce Development Programs administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) help bolster and sustain the nation’s diverse nursing pipeline by addressing all aspects of nursing workforce demand, including nursing education, practice, recruitment, and retention. Robust federal funding for these programs is urgently needed in the wake of unprecedented nationwide nursing shortages. AMSN supports the Nursing Community Coalition’s request of $530 million for HRSA’s Nursing Workforce Development Programs in FY 2023 funding.
b. The National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR) helps ensure that nurse researchers and scientists can continue their lifesaving work at the forefront of disease prevention, patient care, and recovery. Increased federal funding for NINR will further accelerate nursing science aimed at reducing burdensome chronic illness, improving end-of-life care, and advancing patient-centered care across the lifespan. AMSN supports the Nursing Community Coalition’s request of $210 million for NINR in FY 2023 funding.
c. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) funds critical research that is key to informing and improving health care quality and delivery across the nation. Sustained federal investment in the AHRQ will help ensure that providers have ready access to the pipeline of new medical findings, trainings, and tools to better care for their patients. AMSN supports the Friends of AHRQ request of no less than $500 million for the AHRQ in FY 2023 funding.
AMSN advocates for its members throughout the year and this Hill Day was a way to bring our voices to D.C. and the elected officials that represent us. We look forward to growing our Hill Day annually and welcoming you to attend with us next year. Advocacy is a large part of AMSN’s mission and we continuously advocate on our members’ behalf at the local, state and federal levels.
If advocacy and policy issues are of interest to you, don’t forget that AMSN offers a grant to attend the Nurse In Washington Internship (NIWI). The grant opens August 1st and you can learn more about it here.