nursing and politics

To some people, the link     between nursing and politics might seem tenuous to some people, but     to those who have put aside their stethoscopes for an office in     their state capitals, the relationship is a natural one. Nurses are     in the unique position of representing the interests of their fellow     nurses and the health care needs of the general public (Larson, J.,     2016). 

        Black was elected to     the House of Representatives in 2010 and represents     Tennessee’s 6th district, comprised of 19 counties across     middle Tennessee. She has been a nurse for more than 40 years and her  real-world experiences as a nurse have uniquely       positioned her as a credible and effective leader on health care       policy in Congress. She is focused on fully repealing the       president’s disastrous health care law and advancing true       market-based, patient-centered reforms that will bring down the       rising cost of care by increasing private sector competition and       consumer choice . Black serves as Chairman of the powerful House Budget     Committee and a member of the Ways and Means Committee.     ( She is an advocate of Telehealth and has this to     say about its usefulness. Telehealth focuses on     harnessing innovative technology to increase convenience for     patients and caregivers, enhance the quality of care and save both     patients and the Medicare program money. In Tennessee’s rural     communities, the wider offering of telehealth services means more     access to care,”. “For patients in suburban and     urban communities throughout the state, telehealth offers the     benefit of reducing the number of in-person visits to healthcare     providers. As a nurse, I am proud to advance this bill so that     Medicare Advantage plans can offer vital telehealth services as a     basic benefit, rather than a supplemental service for our     seniors.” (Press Release, 2017).

It was stated that, under current law, traditional Medical plans     may only cover telehealth services in an extremely limited set of     circumstances, such as when the beneficiary resides in a qualified     rural area and is physically present in a hospital or     physician’s office. The Increasing Telehealth Access to     Medicare Act starts reform with Medicare Advantage, where plans have     an incentive to ensure cost savings.  Estimates have calculated     that a telehealth consultation can save the Medicare program $45     versus an in-person visit (Press Release, 2017).

        She authored the bill on     “Increasing Telehealth Access to Medicare Act (H.R. 3727),     which was unanimously passed in the U.S. House Ways and Means     Committee.  This bill will increase access to     telehealth services for Medicare Advantage enrollees and allows     plans to build as a core part of their care model. This congressman     must be very influential for this bill which she presented to have     passed the house. It is very interesting to know that those with     medicare can now have access to telehealth all because of the     influence of this powerful nurse. With this development, more nurses     should be encouraged to join politics as they are better advocate     for the people.  


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