NPs lead the way with state Capitol advocacy – AONP

NPs lead the way with state Capitol advocacy

Thank you to all of those who turned out at the state Capitol on Feb. 27 to advocate for greater health care access for Oklahomans!

Approximately 80 nurse practitioners attended AONP’s legislative day in support of House Bill 1013 by Rep. Josh Cockroft and Sen. AJ Griffin. We heard from a number of speakers, including AARP Oklahoma executive director Sean Voskuhl, before visiting with lawmakers about ideas to increase access to health care in the Sooner State.

HB 1013, which was introduced last year, aims to do away with the outdated requirement that NPs sign a collaborative agreement with a physician.

This is a common-sense solution to a real problem.

The truth is, our state is woefully short of primary care providers and that impacts the health of Oklahomans in substantial and measurable ways. We’re 49th in physician-to-patient ratio, and always in the bottom 10 in national health rankings. It’s time Oklahoma joined almost half the states in the country in giving NPs full practice authority.

HB 1013 passed the Oklahoma House of Representatives on a 72-20 vote last legislative session but failed to receive a hearing in the Senate Health and Human Services Committee. The measure is still active and we are urging legislators to pass it this year.

Nurse practitioners have been leading the charge to cut through Oklahoma’s needless red tape, and implement a reform that’s already working in almost half of all states. This issue has momentum now, with a number of advocacy and business groups joining in the fight.

House Bill 1013 must pass out of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee before April 12. If you’re tired of long drives or of waiting days for a primary care appointment, contact your state senator today and ask them to support and co-author HB 1013.