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The power of nursing returns to Washington, DC in force

For the first time in three years, nurses, students, and other leaders gathered today in Washington, DC for ANA Hill Day on June 9, a related event to the ANA Membership Assembly Meeting June 10-11. They will bring nursing priorities to meetings with members of Congress and their staff to build support for federal legislation addressing workplace violence and burnout, preventing unnecessary delays in patient care, and removing barriers to APRN full practice authority.

ANA Hill Day 2022 Group shot
Nurses return to Capitol Hill to make their collective voices heard.

Nearly 300 participants from across the country are sharing their perspectives and expertise during hundreds of scheduled visits on Capitol Hill and virtually.  Before setting out, participants attended a breakfast briefing, where they learned more about ANA-supported legislation and were welcomed by ANA President Ernest J. Grant, PhD, RN, FAAN.

“We are here today to do what nurses do best: advocate,” Grant said. “The meetings you will take part in today will forge and strengthen the relationships with your elected lawmakers and their staff that will ensure that our voices are heard, and that the nursing profession is given its well-deserved, hard-earned seat at the table,” said Grant.

The three key issues that Hill Day attendees are calling attention to are:

  • Improving Seniors’ Timely Access to Care Act ( 3018/H.R. 3173)
  • Full practice authority for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs)
  • Valuing the Nursing Workforce – Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act ( 4182/H.R. 1195)

Grant participated in the ANA Hill Day version of a “fireside chat” with U.S. Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), the first Mexican-American woman elected to Congress and co-chair of the Congressional Nursing Caucus. Roybal-Allard, whose health policy analyst is an RN, who talked about the need to pass legislation that would grant full practice authority to APRNs through the Improving Access to Workers' Compensation for Injured Federal Workers Act (H.R. 6087), which would expand the role of nurse practitioners and physician assistants in providing services to injured federal workers under the federal workers' compensation program. The bill passed the House in early June and is expected to pass the Senate.

Roybal-Allard  encouraged RNs to take steps in their own communities to advocate for patients and the profession. “Get to know your elected officials and their staffs at the state and local level. They are the ones who create the laws and policies that affect your profession. Offer to help and educate them.”

What’s next
ANA and its organizational affiliates, comprised largely of specialty nursing associations, are poised today to share updates and explore areas for collaboration on key issues.

In a ceremony later Thursday evening, ANA will honor the recipients of the 2022 President’s and National Awards.

The 2022 ANA Membership Assembly, a meeting of the association’s governing body, begins Friday, June 10 to address a range of issues, including the impact of climate change on health, workplace violence, and nurse staffing, as well as organizational-focused actions.

Stay up to date and join the conversation
For news on ANA Membership Assembly and related activities, follow us on ANA’s Facebook and Twitter channels. To follow Hill Day, search #ANAHillDay on Twitter.

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