PARK RIDGE, Ill., April 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA) announced today The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) began the delivery of the initial $30 billion in relief funding to healthcare providers in support of the national response to COVID-19 as part of the distribution of the $100 billion provider relief fund provided for in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act recently passed by Congress. This Act provides critical support for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) who have been furloughed as a result of cancellation of elective surgeries during the pandemic
HHS is partnering with UnitedHealth Group to deliver the initial $30 billion distribution to providers as quickly as possible. CRNAs who directly bill for professional services through CMS will receive these grants, which do not need to be repaid.
"This quick dispersal of funds will provide relief to both CRNAs in areas heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and those who are struggling after ambulatory centers have closed due to healthy patients delaying care and cancelled elective services," said AANA President Kate Jansky, MHS, CRNA, APRN, USA LTC (ret).
In addition to providing much needed funds for healthcare providers, the CARES Act reauthorized Title VIII Programs, including the Nurse Anesthetist Traineeship, for five years to help ensure a viable workforce. It also earmarked an additional $16 billion to the Strategic National Stockpile to increase access to PPE, ventilators and other critical equipment to protect providers and expanded telehealth services.
"CRNAs play an important role in airway management for COVID-19 patients that puts them at high risk for contamination," AANA CEO Randall D. Moore, DNP, MBA, CRNA said. "All healthcare providers need appropriate personal protective equipment to protect themselves, their families, and other patients."
Earlier this month, Moore met with President Trump, Vice President Pence, CMS Administrator Verma and other key senior administration officials at the White House to convey the top priorities of CRNAs, nurses, and other healthcare providers as the nation prepared to deepen its response to the pandemic. Along with leaders of other national nursing organizations, Moore requested that federal agencies remove all regulatory barriers for advanced practice nurses and other non-physician providers to practice at the top of their education and training, ensure that all healthcare providers immediately have appropriate personal protective equipment to protect themselves, and ensure a sufficient number of ventilators and other medical equipment to accommodate the anticipated surge of patients impacted by the virus.
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SOURCE American Association of Nurse Anesthetists