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AACN's Washington Weekly

Published August 28, 2019

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Help Save Federal Student Loan Programs

As Congress nears the end of their August recess, conversations around Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization are heating up. AACN is committed to ensuring that any reauthorization incorporates our federal policy priorities of sustainability, inclusivity, and innovation. Specifically, we must preserve federal student loan programs, such as the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program and the Graduate PLUS Loan, and ensure the inclusion of all nursing students, particularly master’s and doctoral students, when considering aggregate borrowing limits.

To help achieve these priorities, we need your help! Please complete our brief Federal Student Loan Survey to help AACN understand your experience with federal student loans and/or grants.

2020 Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule with Comment Period

The 2020 Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule updates payment policies, payment rates, and other provisions for services furnished under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) on or after January 1, 2020. Proposed changes are aimed at reducing burden, recognizing clinicians for the time they spend taking care of patients, removing unnecessary measures, and making it easier for clinicians to be on the path towards value-based care. Part of the proposed fee schedule includes a rule that would allow APRNs and PAs to review and verify – rather than redocument – the work of students. The rule specifically mentions the significant stakeholder involvement from AACN and other groups as a driving force behind their action and highlights the significant impact that AACN’s activities can have on federal health policy.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) will accept comments on the proposed rule until September 27 and will respond to comments in a final rule. The proposed rule can be downloaded from the Federal Register at:

Civic Engagement RFP Announced for Early-Career Scientists 

The Research!America alliance recently announced a new civic engagement initiative to highlight the value of scientific research and innovation. Research!America will provide funding to student groups in activities of their design that focus on civic engagement and elevating the importance of scientific research, innovation, and public health in the national conversation to increase awareness among public officials and local community leaders.

The request for proposals (RFP) from student and postdoc-led science policy groups aims to encourage young scientists to contribute their unique perspectives to help educate the public and policymakers. Proposals are due by September 20 and will be reviewed by Research!America leadership and staff. Read more about the process and apply here.

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