Texas Nurse Practitioners Applaud Lt. Gov. Patrick’s Texans Back To Work Task Force Recommendation
Friday, May 8, 2020
Posted by: Erin Cusack
AUSTIN - Texas Nurse Practitioners (TNP) today issued the following statement in support of Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick’s Texans Back to Work Task Force recommendation that contract requirements between Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) and physicians be waived entirely during the COVID-19 pandemic and that the Texas Legislature consider a complete review of APRN delegation rules.
“APRNs, including nurse practitioners, are a vitally important part of our state’s health care workforce and are proud to be on the front lines helping protect public health during this crisis. We applaud the Texans Back to Work Task Force’s report and its recommendation that the state waive physician delegation requirements for APRNs during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said TNP President Christy Blanco, DNP, APRN, WHNP-BC. “Removing unnecessary and burdensome regulations will ensure nurse practitioners can provide immediate, quality care for Texas patients.”
The Texans Back to Work Task Force recommendation for APRNs:
The Governor’s emergency rules waive the requirement of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) to have a written delegation agreement but APRNs are still required to obtain a delegation agreement from a Texas licensed physician. Many physicians are finding it impossible to enter into these agreements due to limitations related to employer policies, malpractice insurance and other issues of concern. APRNs play a pivotal role in delivering healthcare in Texas. It is suggested that the delegation agreement requirement be waived entirely during the pandemic and that the Texas Legislature be encouraged to consider a complete review, with input from various stakeholders, of APRN delegation rules in the context of lessons learned and any related problems identified during the pandemic.
Almost half the country and numerous federal organizations have done away with delegation requirements permanently, including the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs and all branches of the military. Following a letter from U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar recommending states relax these rules in the face of COVID-19, 17 other states have loosened or lifted these regulations for the duration of the pandemic.
Texas Nurse Practitioners is the largest state association of nurse practitioners in the country. TNP advances and supports the role of NPs who provide accessible, quality health care across Texas each and every day. In hospitals and family clinics, and across a broad spectrum of specialties ranging from women’s health to pediatrics and from mental health to family practice, Texas nurse practitioners provide the care Texans depend on. To learn more visit www.texasnp.org.