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AACN's Washington Weekly

Published March 09, 2022

American Association of College of Nursing - Washington Weekly - Your Inside Track to Federal Policy

Breaking News: Fiscal Year 2022 Omnibus Released. More details will be in next week’s Washington Weekly. Stay tuned!

Biden Administration Announces Updated National COVID-19 Preparedness Plan

On March 1, President Biden unveiled an updated preparedness plan for COVID-19, which focuses on protecting against and treating COVID-19, preparing for new variants, preventing economic and educational shutdowns, and continuing vaccination efforts.  Additionally, a second round of free at-home COVID-19 tests are available through To learn more about the National COVID-19 Preparedness Plan, click here.

AACN Attends Congressional Hearing on COVID-19 and Healthcare Workforce

On March 2, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing titled, Lessons from the Frontline: COVID-19's Impact on American Health Care. Witnesses included Tawanda Austin, MSN, RN, NE-BC, Chief Nursing Officer at Emory University Hospital Midtown along with other healthcare providers. Panelists highlighted the importance of sustained federal funding to support the workforce amidst a national shortage of nurses and physicians. In addition, the experts stressed that more mental health resources are needed for healthcare professionals who are facing unprecedented burnout caused by the pandemic. To view the hearing, click here.

AACN Attends HHS Stakeholder Briefing on Ways to Address the National Mental Health Crisis

On March 2, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) held a briefing outlining the strategy of the President’s Unity Agenda focusing on our nation’s mental health crisis. Deputy HHS Secretary Andrea Palm outlined the three pillars of this plan, including:

  1. Strengthen our behavioral health capacity and competency of the mental health and substance use disorder workforce.
  2. Ensure that every American can access care through their insurance coverage and in their primary care practices, which should be integrated with other social services in the community and online; and
  3. Create environments outside of the healthcare system investing in community services and fostering a cultural environment that promotes mental health, wellness, and recovery.

For listen to the full briefing, click here.

Also on March 2, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra launched a National Tour and listening session with elected officials and leaders across the country to strengthen mental health in America. AACN will continue to monitor these efforts as we support our schools, faculty, and students.

AACN Attends 2022 National Nursing Research Roundtable

On March 3-4, AACN joined the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR) and the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) in the 2022 National Nursing Research Roundtable. NINR Director Dr. Shannon Zenk and ENA Chairperson Dr. Tania D. Strout opened the roundtable and touched on key guiding nursing research principles, including health equity, social determinants of health, population health, and prevention and health promotion. Throughout the roundtable subject matter experts spoke on complexities in emergency department care, prevalent social risks in patient care, affordable housing’s relationship to health, and new strategies to care. To view the agenda and watch the recording of the roundtable, click here

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