Published May 23, 2017
American Association of Colleges of Nursing and National League for Nursing Oppose Cuts to Nursing in President's FY 2018 Budget Proposal
Impedes Growth in the Professional Nursing Workforce and Access to Care
Washington, DC, May 23, 2017 - Reacting to President Trump's proposed budget, the National League for Nursing (NLN) and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) expressed the associations' alarm at the negative impact that certain elements of the budget will have on the nursing workforce and the nation's access to high-quality nursing care.
The NLN and AACN cannot support the President's budget due to its near elimination of funding to programs that help educate the nurse and nurse educator workforce. For more than 50 years, HRSA's Title VIII Nursing Workforce Development Programs have been a mainstay in the pipeline, ultimately improving access to, and quality of, health care in underserved communities.
These competitive grants strengthen education programs, including faculty recruitment and retention efforts; clinical lab enhancements; loans, scholarships, and services that enable students to overcome obstacles to completing their nursing education programs. Moreover, Title VIII grants support the education of nurse faculty preparing them for a future in academia. This increases the pool of faculty during a time of shortage and allows schools of nursing to accept more qualified applicants. These programs are a direct investment in the clinicians who will provide health services to patients in all communities including in rural and underserved populations.
Eliminating $146 million in Title VIII nursing program funding is counter intuitive to the President's goal of increasing access and reducing costs. It is crucial that the federal investment meets current and future nursing and nurse educator demands. This cannot be relegated to private or state funding alone.
AACN and the NLN will continue to advocate for federal support in nursing education programs that are essential to the health and well-being of our nation.