FTC: Consumers and Competition The Winners in Massachusetts Advanced Practice Nursing Bill

For Immediate Release
February 3, 2014
 
 
 
For more information Contact: 
David Ball, Ball Consulting Group, LLC
Office: 617-243-9950
Mobile: 617-548-7809
       Email: david@ballcg.com  ​
 
 
H2009/S1079 Could Lower Costs and Improve Access, FTC Says
 
January 28, 2014 – The Massachusetts Association of Nurse Anesthetists, the Massachusetts Coalition of Nurse Practitioners, and the Massachusetts Chapter of the Association of Pediatric Nurse Associates and Practitioners announced today that proposed legislation that would remove certain outdated physician supervision requirements for advanced practice nurses in Massachusetts has received favorable analysis from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
 
The FTC staff, responding to a request from Massachusetts Rep. Kay Khan (D-Newton), the sponsor of House Bill 2009, stated that the changes would likely benefit consumers and competition in the state’s health care market.
 
“I am so pleased that the FTC has taken the time to evaluate my bill and has issued its strong support for this important legislation,” said Representative Kay Khan.
 
“This bill will allow for greater access to care and remove out-of-date supervision requirements for advanced practice nurses in the Commonwealth. I hope this endorsement will provide the necessary support to push this bill through the legislature by the end of this session.”
 
The legislation would remove a requirement that Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) and Nurse Practitioners (NPs) practice under outdated regulations adopted 20 years ago by both the Board of Registration in Nursing and the Board of Registration in Medicine, a requirement that applies to no other health care profession.
 
The FTC highlighted the high quality and safety of CRNA and NP practice experienced nationally, including in states that do not require physician supervision of these health care professionals.
 
CRNAs and NPs are licensed professionals who must meet national certification standards. They undergo seven to eight years of undergraduate and graduate education and clinical training.
 
“We are gratified that the FTC sees the wisdom in removing these antiquated supervision barriers so that Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists and Nurse Practitioners are better able to practice to the full extent of their education and training,” said Steve L. Alves, PhD, CRNA, FNAP, president of the Massachusetts Association of Nurse Anesthetists.
 
“We urge legislators to pass this bill now, at a time when the shifting dynamics of health care both in Massachusetts and the nation demand the most efficient and cost effective approach,” said Stephanie Ahmed, DNP, FNP-BC, FNAP and president of the Massachusetts Coalition of Nurse Practitioners.
 
“The FTC has recognized that health care reform is inexplicably tied to regulatory flexibility and the retirement of regulations that restrict the supply of qualified and safe health care providers,” said Julianne Nemes Walsh, MS, PNP-BC, Legislative Chair of the Massachusetts Association of Pediatric Nurse Associates and Practitioners.
 
In its Jan. 17, 2014, letter to Rep. Khan, the FTC noted that if institutional health care providers are better able to deploy advanced practice nurses, including CRNAs and NPs, as needed, then Massachusetts consumers “are likely to benefit from lower costs, additional innovation, and improved access to health care.”
The full text of the FTC’s letter to Rep. Khan is available here.
 
About the Massachusetts Association of Nurse Anesthetists
Since 1940, the Massachusetts Association of Nurse Anesthetists (MANA) has been dedicated to the professional interests of Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) and to patient safety through the advancement of anesthesia care. MANA is an affiliate of the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA).
 
About the Massachusetts Coalition of Nurse Practitioners
The Massachusetts Coalition of Nurse Practitioners (MCNP) was organized in 1992 to provide focused representation and support of issues relevant to all Massachusetts Nurse Practitioners regardless of specialty or organizational affiliation.
 
About Massachusetts Chapter of the Association of Pediatric Nurse Associates and Practitioners
The Massachusetts Chapter of the Association of Pediatric Nurse Associates and Practitioners (NAPNAP) is a professional organization that advocates for children and provides leadership for pediatric nurse practitioners who deliver pediatric health care in a variety of settings.