AUSTIN – Director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Health Care Policy John Davidson issued the following statement in support of HB 1885 and SB 751, which would give full practice authority to advanced-practice registered nurses in Texas:
“For years, Texas has struggled with physician shortages, especially in rural areas,” said Davison. “About half our counties don’t have enough primary care physicians, and we have nearly 300 Medically Underserved Areas, more than any other state in the country.
“The future of health care lies in diversified models of care that utilize non-physician providers like nurse practitioners to a much greater degree. Yet Texas is among the most restrictive states when it comes to regulating nurse practitioners and advanced-practice registered nurses. Eighteen states allow nurse practitioners to evaluate patients, diagnose, order and interpret diagnostic tests, initiate and manage treatments—including prescribe medications—under the licensure authority of the of the state board of nursing.
“The research on these policy reforms is clear: the quality, safety, and effectiveness of primary care provided by advanced-practice registered nurses is comparable to that provided by physicians. It’s time for Texas to join the growing number of states that allow full practice authority for these providers, and remove unnecessary government regulations that restrict access to care for Texans and drive up health care costs.”
The bill authors, Rep. Cecil Bell (District 3) and Sen. Jose Rodriguez (District 29), are holding a press conference on the legislation on Wednesday, March 4, 2015 at 9:30 a.m. CST on the north steps of the State Capitol.
John Davidson is the Director of the Center for Health Care Policy at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.
The Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit, free-market research institute based in Austin, Texas.