Advocacy for education, healthcare, ethics, and policies is more important than ever in the healthcare industry. The mission of ANA-Illinois is to support nurses’ rights, advocate for their interests and education, and promote a sense of community within nursing. 

A study conducted by the University of St. Augustine Healthcare revealed a direct correlation between staffing issues and patient care. When nurses feel supported, patients receive better care. Recognizing this, ANA-Illinois has dedicated itself to advocating for positive changes in nursing policies, enabling healthcare professionals to perform their duties more effectively. 

So, what has ANA-Illinois achieved this year? Keep reading to learn more about our 2023 Nursing Advocacy Accomplishments. 

Legislative Victories:

Bill HB1615: Nursing Workforce Supply and Demand Survey:

In response to the increasing nursing shortages, this bill aims to amend the Nurse Practice Act by mandating a comprehensive survey of all practicing nurse practitioners. The objective is to identify the areas in Illinois facing the greatest challenges, allowing for more effective resource allocation. First read in the House on February 1st of 2023, this bill has since passed through the House and Senate, and is pending approval of the Governor.

Bill SB199: Removing APRNs’ Consulting Relationship Requirement:

The amendment grants APRNs with full practice authority the ability to prescribe Schedule 2 narcotics and benzodiazepines without the need to consult a physician. This change empowers our capable and experienced nurses, placing the trust in a patient’s care directly in their hands. This bill was introduced in January 2023, this bill has successfully passed through the House, Senate, and gained approval from the governor. As of June 9, 2023, it has come into effect.

Bill SB1785: Med Practice-Collab Agreement

This bill aims to amend the Medical Practice Act of 1987 by introducing a requirement for a written agreement between licensed physicians and licensed Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs). This agreement would affirm that APRNs have the authority to practice all services provided by the physician. By granting this expanded scope of practice, the bill entrusts experienced nurses with greater patient responsibilities, enabling them to deliver the highest level of care. Introduced in February 2023, the bill is currently awaiting approval from the governor. Once approved, it will signify an important step towards aligning the Medical Practice Act and the Nurse Practice Act, facilitating collaborative and integrated healthcare delivery.

Budgeting Advancement

Further efforts have been made in budget advancement for nursing education. Better funding means better programs for our nurses, and ANA-Illinois has made sure to not only keep track, but work to expand budgets in several key programs. 

Here is a list of all programs ANA-Illinois has worked to grow the budget on.

 License Plate Fund to Illinois Nurses Foundation 

This fundraiser program helps the Illinois Nurses Foundation. With every nursing license plate purchased, $20.00 is donated to INF.

Higher Education in Nursing 

From GRF to Board of Higher Ed – Nurse Educator Fellowships A program to promote further education in nursing through fellowships and mentorships. 

ANA-Illinois understands the importance of higher education, and worked to double the budget for this program this year. 

From GRF to Board of Higher Ed – For Competitive Grants A program dedicated to helping bring higher education to nurses through grants and scholarships. ANA-Illinois recognises the importance of affordability in education, which is why the push was made to expand the budget for this program. 

To Recap The Recap

The importance of nursing advocacy in addressing critical issues such as staffing shortages, budget constraints, education, and ethics cannot be overstated. ANA-Illinois recognizes these challenges and has been at the forefront of promoting awareness and advocating for legislative changes to improve the situation. 

By educating the public on these issues and actively working towards long-term solutions, ANA-Illinois is dedicated to making a positive difference in supporting and empowering our nurses. Through their efforts, they aim to ensure that nurses can provide the highest level of care to patients and create a more favorable environment for the nursing profession as a whole. With ongoing commitment and collaboration, ANA-Illinois strives to make a lasting impact and strengthen the healthcare system by championing the rights and interests of nurses across the state.