Washington Weekly

American Association of Colleges of Nursing | Washington Weekly | Your Inside track to federal Policy

May 24, 2023

Legislative Update: New Bills Introduced that Address Maternal Health, Support Nursing Education, and Honor the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps

As Congressional champions continue to support nursing education and the workforce, we were pleased to see new legislation introduced last week, including:

  • The Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act (S.1606/H.R.3305): On May 15, Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Representatives Lauren Underwood (D-IL-14) and Alma Adams (D-NC-12) reintroduced this comprehensive legislative package, which is comprised of 13 bills and works to address the growing maternal health crisis in this country. One of the bills, the Perinatal Workforce Act (H.R.3523), includes resources to grow and diversify the nursing workforce in maternal and perinatal health. AACN is proud to join over 200 organizations in support of this vital effort. For a summary of this bill, click here and to read the press release, click here.
  • The Providing Real-World Education and Clinical Experience by Precepting Tomorrow’s (PRECEPT) Nurses Act (S.1627): On May 16, Senators Mark Kelly (D-AZ) and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) introduced bipartisan legislation that provides a $2,000 tax credit for nurses who serve at least 200 hours as a clinical preceptor to nursing students and advanced practice nurse candidates in a Health Professional Shortage Area. This seven-year pilot program offers an innovative solution to address the clinical education needs of the future nursing workforce. To read the press release, click here.
  • The U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps Service Recognition Act (S.1633/H.R.3428): On May 17, Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Susan Collins (R-ME), Steve Daines (R-MT), and Angus King (I-ME) joined with Representatives Mike Lawler (R-NY-17), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-01), Chris Deluzio (D-PA-17), and Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC-At Large) to reintroduce this bipartisan, bicameral legislation that recognizes those who served in the U.S. Cadet Nurses Corps during World War II. To read the press release, click here.

AACN looks forward to working with Congress to advance these legislative efforts. To receive timely updates and help advance academic nursing priorities at the federal level, sign up and become an AACN Advocate today!

Nominate a Nurse Today: Leadership Opportunities at the Federal Level

Since July 2018, AACN has been the convener of the Ad Hoc Nomination Consortium. Through this work, AACN collaborates with more than 20 nursing organizations to identify and nominate experts in the profession to serve on federal committees, taskforces, councils, and boards.

If you, or someone you know, has expertise or experience related to the below opportunities, please submit their name and information using this nomination form. This form will be updated as new federal opportunities arise.

Nominate a nurse today! Below are five federal opportunities that are currently open for nominations:

Please join us as we work to ensure more nurses are at the federal policy table!

Senate Holds Hearings on Issues Impacting Mental Health and Increasing Healthcare Access in Rural America

On May 17, AACN virtually attended two Senate committee hearings, including:

  • The Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Subcommittee on Primary Health and Retirement Security hearing titled, A Crisis in Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Care: Closing Gaps in Access by Bringing Care and Prevention to Communities. During this conversation, members of Congress expressed bipartisan support to address the opioid and mental health crisis in the country. Panelists urged investment in the recruitment and retention of behavioral health professionals, including nurses, as well as additional mental health services for those in the healthcare workforce. This remains an ongoing conversation as Congress finds ways to address the crisis. To watch the hearing, click here.
  • The Senate Finance Subcommittee on Health Care hearing titled, Improving Health Care Access in Rural Communities: Obstacles and Opportunities. Witnesses, including a representative from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, highlighted the need of healthcare services in rural America with an emphasis on maternal health. The Subcommittee further discussed ways to help attract more healthcare practitioners to rural communities. To watch the hearing, click here.

AACN will continue to monitor these topics as conversations remain ongoing at the federal level.