Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act bolsters seniors’ access to home health care services and provides needed funding for personal protective equipment (PPE) for nurse practitioners (NPs) and other health care providers. The law authorizes NPs to certify and recertify home health care services for Medicare patients, strengthens funding for PPE, and ensures vital resources to respond to the pandemic. Under the previous Medicare rules, only physicians could place orders for patients to receive home health services – medical care provided in a patient’s home that can include skilled medical care, respiratory therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy.
SB 303: Pharmacy Consults
SB 303 will allow physicians to allow their collaborating clinical nurse specialists, certified nurse-midwives, certified nurse practitioners, and physician assistants to enter into consult agreements with pharmacists for the purposes of chronic disease management. The current laws governing consult agreements came as a result of OPA’s work in the 131st General Assembly on HB 188, which was carried by Senators Huffman and Manning when they were serving in the Ohio House of Representatives. SB 303’s introduction comes on the heels of recent emergency rules implemented by the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy that temporarily expands pharmacist consult agreements to certified nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified nurse midwives, and physician assistants in hospitals and institutional facilities. SB 303 will ensure that pharmacist collaboration with physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants can be agnostic of practice setting, and it will make it a permanent fixture of Ohio law.
HB 224: CRNA Practice
State Rep. Jon Cross (R-Kenton) wants to allow Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) to be utilized more by health care facilities throughout the state. The legislation, House Bill 224, passed out of the Ohio House by a vote of 94-2 on January 29, 2020. The bill intends to clarify Ohio CRNA scope of practice by allowing facilities and medical staff to use CRNAs in all phases of anesthesia care in a way that will be the most efficient and cost-effective for patients. In Ohio, over 150 facilities have CRNAs as the sole anesthesia providers that allow them to offer stabilization services, especially within the rural and underserved urban areas in the state.-Clarifies CRNA scope of practice to include ordering drugs, tests, treatments, fluids, and diagnostic tests in the perioperative period, when specific conditions are met:
- Permits a CRNA to direct RNs, LPNs, and Respiratory Therapists to provide supportive care within the perioperative period and when performing clinical support functions;
- Requires facility policy to establish standards and procedures to be following by CRNAs when performing specific functions;
- Allows supervising physicians to opt-out of CRNA expanded authority if they believe it is in the best interest of the patient.