Government Affairs

Make your voice heard

Government Affairs

Make your voice heard

Day on the Hill

ENA’s Day on the Hill

Each year we invite ENA members to advocate on Capitol Hill for issues impacting emergency nursing. No experience talking to your legislators? This two-day event features one day of training and one day spent advocating on Capitol Hill. Day on Hill reached capacity in record time this year, so reach out to your state council President if you’d like to participate in 2018.

PREPARING FOR DAY ON THE HILL?

 Summary of Day on the Hill 2018 Requests 

For Day on the Hill 2018, the following will be ENA’s requests in the House of Representatives and Senate. We have also included a summary of each of these bills. 

The discrepancy between the House and Senate requests is based on where these bills are in the legislative process. The goal is for Day on the Hill attendees to only advocate for requests that are timely in each body. Please note that only one of these bills will be a request in both chambers. We will review these in detail at Day on the Hill, but wanted to provide this information to you now, in case offices you are requesting meetings with request topics of discussion 

Requests in the House of Representatives 

(1) the Health Care Workplace Violence Prevention Act 

(2) the Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act. 

Requests in the Senate 

(1) the MISSION ZERO Act 

(2) the SOAR to Health and Wellness Act 

(3) the Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act 

House Request #1 – Support and Cosponsor the Health Care Workplace Violence Prevention Act (H.R. 5223) 

The Health Care Workplace Violence Prevention Act will ensure that health care employers who accept payments from Medicare and Medicaid take specific steps to prevent workplace violence and ensure the safety of patients and workers. H.R. 5223 will require health care employers, primarily hospitals and outpatient clinics, to develop and implement a comprehensive a workplace violence prevention plan. 

In developing and implementing such a plan, a covered health care employer would: 

  • • Develop processes to identify and respond to risks that make settings vulnerable to violence; 
  • • Implement protocols to document and investigate violence; 
  • • Create an environment that supports employees who report incidents of violence, including non-retaliation policies; 
  • • Ensure that employees are appropriately trained in identifying and addressing hazards; and 
  • • Obtain buy-in from employees, including emergency nurses, in the development and implementation of new policies. 

House Request #2 – Support and Cosponsor the Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act (H.R. 1876) 

The Volunteer Protection Act, enacted in 1997, already provides limited liability protections in both state and federal courts for most volunteers if those volunteers are acting on behalf of a qualified nonprofit or governmental organization. However, this protection does not apply to 

health care professionals who would like to volunteer during a disaster or public health emergency outside a formal relationship with a nonprofit or government agency. 

The Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act would amend current law to provide limited liability protection against both federal and state civil actions for licensed health care professionals, including emergency nurses, who volunteer during a federally-declared disaster or public health emergency. This protection applies to health professionals even if they are not affiliated with a nonprofit or governmental agency. The bill specifically does not provide protections against liability for cases involving willful or criminal conduct, gross negligence or if the professional was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 

Senate Request #1 – Support and Cosponsor the MISSION ZERO Act (S. 1022) 

The MISSION ZERO Act would create two new grant programs to be administered jointly by HHS and DOD. These programs would allow the armed forces to partner with a local trauma center to embed military trauma providers into those facilities. One of the grant programs would place entire military trauma teams (which would include nurses). The other grant program would place individual trauma care providers in civilian trauma centers. 

The goals of the legislation are twofold. First, it will allow military providers, when they are not deployed, to maintain their readiness by caring for civilian trauma patients. Second, the bill facilitates the transfer of knowledge from military to civilian trauma care providers, enhancing the practice of trauma care at civilian hospitals in the United States. 

This bill will not be a request in the House of Representatives since it already passed the House on February 26, 2017. 

Senate Request #2 – Support and Cosponsor the SOAR to Health and Wellness Act (S. 256) 

Human trafficking has become a global human rights crisis. Criminals use violence, debt, threats and other manipulative tactics to force millions of men, women and children to engage in commercial sex or forced labor around the world. Research indicates that as many as 88 percent of all trafficking victims receive medical treatment while being trafficked. Moreover, 63 percent of those individuals receive treatment in an emergency department. In some cases, an emergency nurse may be the only person in a position to rescue a victim from their traffickers. 

The Stop, Observe, Ask, and Respond (SOAR) to Health and Wellness Act (S. 256) will improve care for victims of human trafficking by creating a new pilot program to better equip health care professionals with the tools they need to identify victims of human trafficking; provide evidence-based, patient centered care; facilitate communication between the victim and law enforcement; and appropriately refer victims to social or victims service agencies. 

Like the MISSION ZERO Act, the SOAR to Health and Wellness Act will not be a request in the House of Representatives since this bill already passed the House on February 26, 2017. 

Senate Request #3 – Support and Cosponsor the Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act (S. 781) 

S. 781, the Senate version of the Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act is virtually identical to the House version of this legislation. Since this bill has not been passed in either the House or Senate, it is an appropriate and timely request for both chambers. 

EN411 Action Network

 

We established the EN411 Action Network to strengthen the voice of emergency nurses in the legislative and regulatory process.

Members of the EN411 Action Network are the first to hear about important opportunities to engage with policymakers through ENA's Action Alerts. They also receive a monthly newsletter highlighting news, issues, and legislation impacting emergency nursing. Join the thousands of emergency nurses who are already standing up and speaking out!

Action Alerts - Make Your Voices Heard!

Action Alerts are a quick and easy way for you to contact your legislators about a specific issue, bill, or vote. We will provide you with a sample letter that can be sent directly to your legislators. When possible, we always recommend you to personalize these communications.

Current Action Alerts