ICAN Act Proposes Increased Access to NP Services

Introduced to Congress by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) and Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH), bill H.R.8812, colloquially known as the Improving Care and Access to Nurses (ICAN) Act, proposes amendments to titles XVII and XIX of the Social Security Act and the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.

If passed, these amendments will increase access to services provided by advanced practice registered nurses under the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and for other purposes. It would also increase access to medically necessary health care services for patients across the country by removing outdated federal barriers to care.

“The health of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries depends on timely access to high-quality health care. Today, millions of patients are choosing NPs as their healthcare providers. This legislation would retire barriers to practice that impede access to timely health care for our patients,” said former AANP President April Kapu, DNP, APRN, ACNP-BC, FAANP, FCCM, FAAN. “It’s critically important that healthcare policies reflect who is providing care in our communities and that our healthcare system is effective and efficient. The ICAN Act would move healthcare delivery forward for patients, providers, and our nation.”

The ICAN Act would authorize NPs to order and supervise cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation, certify when patients with diabetes need therapeutic shoes, have their patients fully included in the beneficiary attribution process for the Medicare Shared Savings Program, refer patients for medical nutrition therapy, certify and recertify a patient’s terminal illness for hospice eligibility, perform all mandatory examinations in skilled nursing facilities, and more.

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