SILVER SPRING, MD - The American Nurses Association (ANA) applauds the passage of the Improving Access to Workers’ Compensation for Injured Federal Workers Act of 2022 in the House of Representatives by a vote of 325-83. This action recognizes the importance of access to quality and safe patient care provided by Nurse Practitioners (NPs) in all settings and is an important step toward eliminating unnecessary federal barriers to nurses.
ANA also acknowledges the bipartisan sponsors for spearheading and advancing this vital legislation: Representatives Joe Courtney (D-CT) and Tim Walberg (R-MI); House Education & Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA); Ranking Member Virginia Foxx (R-NC); Workforce Protections Subcommittee Chairwoman Alma Adams (D-NC), as well as the bipartisan House Leadership.
This critical legislation will update the Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA) to authorize NPs and Physician Assistants (PAs) to certify injuries and illnesses that occur on the job and oversee health care delivery, consistent with their state scope of practice. The legislation will also increase patient choice by providing federal employees with the option to select an NP to certify their workplace injuries and illnesses and oversee their care. Currently, federal employees are deprived of this choice. Further, it would improve continuity of care by ensuring injured federal workers who routinely rely on an NP for their care would not be forced to switch providers, particularly in rural and underserved communities where health care options are already limited.
Despite opposition from the American Medical Association, other physician groups, as well as a few physicians in Congress, ANA joined our nursing colleagues at the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), the nursing community, and many others to tirelessly fight for access to care for NPs. This victory is an essential first step toward removing yet another federal barrier that prevents NPs from practicing to the extent of their existing state scope of practice.
ANA commends the Congressional Nursing Caucus Co-Chairs Representatives Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) and David Joyce (R-OH) and Vice Chairs Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) and Rodney Davis (R-IL) for their support.
ANA will continue to lead and join advocacy efforts that demonstrate the indisputable value of nursing in every sector. We look forward to working with the U.S. Senate to ensure this legislation’s swift passage.