Advocacy

Grassroots Resource Center

New Bill Would Boost Direct Access to Care
By Removing NP Practice Barriers

New legislation introduced by Assembly Health Committee Chair Jim Wood (D-Santa Rosa) would help assure direct access to health care for California’s growing and diverse population by removing antiquated barriers to nurse practitioner practice authority.

Assembly Bill 890 will grant specified NPs full practice authority, allowing them to work to the full extent of their education and training, in order to ensure direct access to the health care delivery system for millions of Californians who now have access to coverage, but often struggle to find health care providers. NPs would work within a specified scope of practice, without physician supervision. To qualify for this new model, NPs must hold a national certification, an education requirement beyond what is required by California law, and must carry medical malpractice insurance.

With health care reform a clear-cut priority for new Governor Gavin Newsom, and a primary focus for the 2019-20 Legislative Session, a report from the California Future Health Workforce Commission is certain to impact the conversation over AB 890. Released February 4, the report validates what CANP has long advocated – that the removal of practice barriers imposed on nurse practitioners in California will be a key step in assuring direct access to care for California’s growing and diverse population.

Read the full report from the California Future Health Workforce Commission, or use this link to view the portion of the report specific to the Commission’s recommendations regarding nurse practitioners.

Direct Outreach Remains Critical

Extensive grassroots efforts by CANP members and allies have made tremendous inroads by educating lawmakers about just what a nurse practitioner is and the vital role that NPs play. Due in no small part to those efforts, CANP has become one of the truly influential voices in health care policy.

It is thus critical that all CANP members engage in direct outreach to state legislators in their local districts. No one is better equipped to tell the story of the vital role that NPs play than NPs themselves, and nothing will help to promote the cause better than having a dialogue with elected officials.

There are a number of ways to join the effort, including:

  • Working with your CANP chapter to organize district office visits with legislators and their staff members
  • Joining colleagues for CANP Lobby Day
  • Engaging on social media to help spread awareness, bring others into the cause and target key messages to elected officials
  • Contributing to the CANP Political Action Committee (PAC) to help level the playing field against well-funded interests intent on limiting NP practice authority

Working now to develop a relationship with your elected officials will be critical when it comes time to ask for their support on issues that are vital to the nurse practitioner profession. Contact your local CANP chapter leaders or CANP Grassroots Coordinator Stephanie Tseu (canpgrassroots@gmail.com) for assistance.

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