By a vote of 94-1, the U.S. Senate has sent President Trump a bill addressing FDA user fee agreements meant to speed up the Food & Drug Administration's review of new drugs and devices.
"There are a number of issues with the American health care system, but if your house is on fire, you want to put out the fire, and the fire in this case is the individual health insurance market."
On May 15, the American Medical Association (AMA) urged Senate leaders to keep in mind patients at risk of losing their insurance coverage. "Significant changes to the ACA or Medicaid program potentially threaten the ability for millions of Americans to obtain and retain coverage. It is these citizens, constituents, and patients who should be at the center of this debate," wrote AMA CEO James L. Madara, MD.
The Tennessee Patient Stability Coalition, a coalition of 17 leading patient and provider groups is voicing support for a bill that would require commercial health plans honor the terms of their prescription coverage plans for the duration of the contract year. The group said the legislation, known as the "Reliable Coverage Act" (SB 991/HB 960), would protect consumers by preventing prescription coverage reductions outside of the open enrollment period.
Calling it a 'Christmas miracle,' U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander discusses the importance of the 21st Century Cures Act.
Despite the uncertainty that comes with a changing administration at the federal level, work moves forward at the state level for the Tennessee Hospital Association, Tennessee Medical Association and Tennessee Nurses Association. Below is a snapshot of priorities and plans for 2017. Additional information is available on each of the statewide organizations' websites.
The Healing Arts Scope of Practice Task Force, which was convened by Public Chapter 1046 to discuss access to care including delivery by the appropriate healthcare professional, often found Tennessee's advanced practice nurses and physicians on opposite sides of the issue.
Former Lieutenant Governor Ron Ramsey and Speaker of the House Beth Harwell commissioned a Scope of Practice Task Force to change the conversation and the players in the ongoing debate about the need for and value of physician supervision of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) in the state. The 12,612 APRNs in Tennessee include 9,717 Nurse Practitioners (77.0 percent of the total), 2,564 Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (20.3 percent), 193 Certified Nurse Midwives (1.5 percent), and 138 Clinical Nurse Specialists (1.1 percent).
Tennessee Public Chapter 1046 created an equally balanced task force of advanced practice nurses and practicing physicians to "make recommendations to the general assembly for the improvement of Tennessee residents' health by providing access to quality and cost effective care." The group first met in June 2016 and, after several meetings and other deliberations, will issue a few recommendations to the General Assembly for legislators to consider in 2017.
Legislation cosponsored by Alexander designed to help improve collaboration among rural doctors and specialists in other areas so doctors can better serve their patients.
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