As I contemplated and thought about the New Year, I thought about how we are pushed to make resolutions, goals, and life changes. But then I thought about 2014, not in terms of MY goals and MY resolutions … whether I lose weight, work out more, try new hobbies, or eat less fruitcake (HaHa) … but I asked myself, “what does 2014 present”? As I look into 2014 in regards to issues affecting CRNAs, a couple of themes come to mind.
The first is Healthcare Reform and Medicaid expansion. The legislators have already made it be known to all health oriented associations, that in 2014, Tennessee WILL fix Medicaid expansion and healthcare reform will take place. The Tennessee Association of Nurse Anesthetists (TANA) is already using our lobbyists to ensure that CRNAs voice is heard and those issues regarding reimbursement for anesthesia services will have CRNAs concerns addressed. This is also the year that rules in regards to Pain Management are enforced and new guidelines regarding prescribing Pain Medications are enforced. TANA is working to ensure that language is favorable to CRNAs.
Second, we are continually working to meet the interests and needs of CRNAs. With the help of our PR firm, TANA is working hard to engage each CRNA, proving that their hard earned dues are being used to meet their needs. We are presently redesigning the website, making it user friendly, allowing CRNAs to have the resources they need at their fingertips. We have a blog that you currently are reading that allows you to comment and discuss those issues that are affecting you in your practice.
Third, TANA is remaining aware of the national trends, insurance company policies, and trends in hospital and ASC reimbursement trends that are affecting CRNAs. This year the AANA is encouraging each state to have a Reimbursement Specialist. We have two, led by Abe Abuelouf as our representative to ensure that TANA is proactive in addressing reimbursement issues.
Lastly, I would like to remind each CRNA to have a great year. Enjoy the little things that bring a smile to your face. Encourage your colleagues, your family, and friends. Make 2014, a year to remember, a great year. Be thankful for the big and small. Thank you for being a Patient Advocate, for Providing Excellence in Anesthesia Care, and For Being a CRNA.
Mark J . Haffey MSN, CRNA, APN