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Grassroots Call To Action! UNP Legislation: APRN Compact

Posted 4 months ago by Melissa J Hinton

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WE NEED YOUR HELP!

Grassroots CALL TO ACTION! The UNP Legislative team asks you to begin communicating with your senator and representative (find them here) as we begin our grassroots efforts (here’s how to become an advocate in <10 minutes and start reading at “WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP?  COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR DISTRICT LEGISLATORS.”)

We will send out a few MORE CALL TO ACTION items over the next weeks as our APRN Compact moves through the Senate and then progresses to the House. Please introduce yourself to your legislators as their “constituent” and introduce your profession. Ask if they have heard about the APRN Compact Bill (SB 0151). Ask for their support and briefly use the talking points (attached) to let them know what it is about. Senate Bill (SB) 0151 is sponsored by Senator Bramble and Representative Dunnigan (you can mention their names - they are well-known on the hill). 

Bill passage: SB 0151 was heard in the Senate Business and Labor Committee (B&L) on Friday the 11th, our 1st step, and passed with a unanimous vote 5-0 to move the bill to the Senate Floor. Here, all the senators will vote on the bill (2nd step). Your communication with your legislators is essential right now! If we pass, we will be sent to the House B&L committee where we will present the bill to be able to continue to the House (3rd step). After that, the House floor for the full vote (4th step). When our bill passes there, we will wait for finalities and then it will be sent to the governor for signature (5th step). Our bill efforts started in July of 2021 after several years of planning. The compact would give Utah APRNs a broader choice for practice options and will help those who live on UTAHs rural borders more healthcare options, especially in mental health.

SUPPORT & OPPOSITION FOR SB 0151: We have a strong list of supporters including our own state organizations and several national companies and organizations. This includes the Department of Defense, Amazon, Walmart, and others.

* Please note, there is some opposition to the bill. UMA has asked for language clarification which were have provided, but did not oppose in the committee hearing on Friday. AANP, UNPs parent organization, also opposes the compact because 

(1) they feel that the compact should afford all states schedule II prescribing authority. Fact: this is not a compact right…this authority resides with the federal DEA, 

(2) AANP wants a full APRN advisory committee for the compact. Fact: the compact will bring 1 State Board of Nursing representative to the committee to represent our state, and 

(3) they contend that APRNs should not be required to have experience before applying for a multi-state license. Fact: UNP agrees that APRNs are educated and ready to start practice upon licensure. However, many states have a 2080 hour transition-to-practice rule. Experience of 2080 hours will allow almost all states to adopt the compact so that we can uniformly begin to move the entire nation towards full practice authority. This will allow states with supervisory practice laws to still be able to enter the compact. The compact does not limit Utah practice laws ... It ensures that the experienced NPs who come to the state rise to our standards for licensure.

Did you miss the UNP legislative event on Feb 4th? Our UNP Day With Our Legislators/Day at the Capitol went virtual due to the continued coronovirus. But as usual, our NPs adjusted and made the most of it. Please see the brief meeting minutes and bills that UNP supports. There are more than 50 health-related bills. True UNP.org website gives more information about the legislative process under the left-side Legislative tab.

UNP Legislative Day

0800 (5 min.): Dr. Amy Bleak, DNP and UNP President thanked NPs, students, schools, and legislators for attending. She introduced and thanked the Legislative Committee. She then turned the meeting over to Dr. Melissa Hinton, DNP, and Lee Moss, ANP and FNP, Legislative Co-Chairs.

0805 (3 min.): Lee Moss reviewed last year’s HB9287 which retired the “Collaboration & Referral” plan which removed barriers to practice. The only remaining restrictions are that new grad NPs in solo/independent practice will need to attest that they have a mentor when prescribing schedule II meds if needed, plus 7 hrs. of CS CE related to opioid prescribing. 

0808 (2 min.) Lee Moss reviewed the CARES Act passed in March 2020. Though it removed significant barriers to practice for APPs, states had to adopt those recommendations legally. UNP petitioned to have that rule added and NPs will soon be able to order home health care independently. We will make an announcement when it is in effect.

0810 (15 min.): Dr. Melissa HInton discussed the APRN Compact (as noted above), which included a discussion about why it is important, the talking points, benefits of the compact, and necessary facts.

0825 (15 min.): Dr. Amy Bleak talked about how to find, contact and speak to your legislators (state representatives & senators). See the attached handout.

0840 – 1000: Legislator presentations: Speakers included Foxley & Pignanelli Lobbying Firm, Representative Suzanne Harrison, Representative Jim Dunnigan, 

Other topics discussed throughout the morning:

  • UNP supports 
    • CRNA Opt-out (signed by the governor)
    • Auricular Acupuncture HB 0195 
    • Surgical Smoke Evacuation HB 58 
    • Vax Passport opt-out letter APRN signature authority HB 0063
    • Civil Commitment Revisions for APRN signature authority HB 0261 
    • Medical Assistant Amendments HB 0316 
    • Nurse Apprentice Licensing HB 0101
  • UNP opposes Anesthesia Assistant bill HB 0121. Please send a letter of opposition - this bill will DECREASE employment opportunities for CRNAs and allow anesthesiologists to employ assistants to run surgical rooms without the necessary education.
  • UNP Special Election for 2 vacant board members and president-elect. Please volunteer!
  • UNP Bylaws Notice and Vote coming soon!
  • Please sign up to be a preceptor !Click the link to register.
  • Don’t forget to register for the UNP Pharmacology Conference April 22-23. Register here

Thank you for your communications with your senator and representative!

Melissa Hinton and Lee Moss, Legislative Co-Chairs