Combined Events Yield Double the Impact

SACRAMENTO – For the first time, the California Association of Nurse Practitioners combined its annual House of Delegates session and Lobby Day into a single two-day event. According to most in attendance, the pairing resulted in greater efficiency and effectiveness of both endeavors, held February 28-29.

As the chief legislative and policy-making body of the association, the House of Delegates (HOD) is empowered to vote on resolutions that impact the direction of the organization as well as make changes to the CANP’s bylaws. In addition, HOD has the authority to elect various association officers.

In executing its duties, the HOD elected Beth Haney as CANP President, Donna Emanuele as President-Elect, and Sandra Bresnahan as Vice President of Corporate Affairs.  All three take office on July 1, 2012.

The body also approved four resolutions to amend the association’s by-laws, establishing HOD input into determining membership dues, establishing the eligibility of delegates, changing the name of the associations Public Relations Committee to “Marketing and Communications Committee,” and clarifying numerous sections of the by-laws.

As the two-day HOD session wrapped up, participants shifted into advocacy mode in preparation for Lobby Day briefings and legislative visits. A total of 125 nurse practitioners and health care advocates gathered for the chance to voice their concerns about the implementation of federal healthcare reform, funding for nurse practitioner education and the reinstatement of the Board of Registered Nurses. Participants conducted a total of 43 meetings with decisionmakers in the Capitol to help assure that the concerns of nurse practitioners are accounted for in the legislative process.

The Lobby Day program also included recognition of Senator Gloria Negrete Macleod (D-Montclair) as NP Advocate of the Year for 2011. Negrete McLeod authored Senate Bill 94, which codified many of the important duties that NPs perform for their patients every day, including ordering medical equipment that  patients rely upon, certifying disability forms so that  patients can draw down disability benefits, and developing treatment plans for patients who are receiving care at home. Prior to SB 94, nurse practitioners struggled to provide these services to their patients, despite the fact that all of these functions are consistent with an NP's education and training. Thanks to the changes enacted through SB 94, NPs are now able to serve their patients more efficiently and effectively.

CANP is the voice for more than 16,000 nurse practitioners in the Golden State, uniting nurse practitioners in an exchange of ideas, practice advice and development of professional assets while working to advance the nurse practitioner profession statewide.