By Mark C. Crider, PhD, MSN, RN, President, Pennsylvania State Nurses Association
By Betsy M. Snook, MEd, RN, BSN, CEO, Pennsylvania State Nurses Association
Little has raised more national angst than the repeal and replacement of the ACA. In the past few days, many national groups have come out in opposition to the proposed changes. In a society of instant gratification and a growing culture of impatience, we have had limited time to carefully consider these changes and their effects.
Democracy is a participatory process supporting the inclusion of all stakeholders, public consultation and education, and engagement in constructive dialogue. This process is particularly important in addressing issues that could affect the community and the common good of its citizens. A proper repeal and replacement of the ACA is an example of how the process should work. All stakeholders should be at the table to provide expert information and perspectives. To achieve the best possible outcome, constructive dialogue must continue.
The Pennsylvania State Nurses Association (PSNA) recognizes that these proposed changes will affect patients and patient care. As the leading professional nursing organization representing the state’s largest number of healthcare providers, we support inclusion of the right stakeholders at the dialogue tables, including professional nurses and community members. Critical thinking and meaningful discussions will result in high-quality healthcare services.
As these conversations take place, PSNA supports means to achieve improved outcomes. These include: (1) increased access to care through advanced practice registered nurses; (2) adequate nurse staffing levels; (3) cost-saving tools for consumers who purchase healthcare; and (4) strategies to pay providers based on outcomes and efficiency rather than volume of services.
In the coming weeks, we hope the democratic process will ensure that the appropriate stakeholders will be seated at the tables as they engage in civil, thoughtful dialogue to achieve a long-term, comprehensive, and cost-effective healthcare system.