STATEMENT OF Carol Manchester, President National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists In support of the Protecting Access to Primary Care Act, HR 2896
“The Affordable Care Act will go a long way toward increasing access to health care as has been frequently noted, but there is an omission in the law that prevents it from achieving its full potential for helping more people get the health care they need. While it increases the Medicaid reimbursement rates for primary care physicians, it doesn’t do the same for other primary care providers.
“The ‘Protecting Access to Primary Care Act’ introduced by Representative Suzanne Bonamici addresses this important omission. Medicaid beneficiaries are increasingly relying on clinical nurse specialists and other primary care providers to meet their health care needs. By increasing reimbursement rates for these providers, this bill will encourage more of them to care for Medicaid patients. This is particularly important in rural and underserved areas that have shortages of primary care providers.
“There are more than 70,000 clinical nurse specialists in the United States who have the skills and expertise to improve the quality of care and reduce the costs in our health care system. Many of them manage the primary care needs of their patients with chronic conditions. We need to be sure that they and all other providers are given the proper incentives to ensure every American gets the health care she or he needs. The National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists endorses this important bill and strongly encourages the House of Representatives to pass it.”