"APN Legislative Day " March 1st 2010
In the months leading up to the next legislative session, it is very important that nurse practitioners establish relationships with legislators. There is simply no substitute for a working relationship with a legislator who knows and understands our issues. One of the easiest ways to do this is to visit your legislator in his or her home district. During this time of year, they are visiting with constituents and fund raising as they gear up for re-election. Some of you have already taken advantage of this to attend campaign events. It's usually fairly easy at these functions to get a few minutes of face time to introduce yourself and perhaps make a small campaign contribution., and of course, it's always good to take a few NP friends along! Plan to follow-up with a longer visit at the legislator's district office.
Think of a legislative visit as a large patient education project! All NPs are familiar with and accustomed to this process. To prepare for the visit, TNP Governmental Affairs Committee has prepared several handouts and fact sheets . These can be downloaded from the TNP Members Only site. You will find a suggested script to help guide the conversation. There is also a fact sheet describing the benefits of a more independent NP practice. Another handout outlines and refutes common misconceptions about Board Authorized Prescriptive Authority. There is even a step by step guide for setting up a visit. Going to the web site for the Coalition for Nurses in Advanced Practice and reviewing some of the information found here can also help prepare you for a visit.
To get some hands on practice with a legislative visit, come to Legislative Day at the Capitol . The Coalition for Nurses in Advanced Practice is sponsoring this event on March 1. Here, you will receive tips on talking with legislators and learn the fine points of Board Authorized Prescriptive Authority. You can register for the event at the TNP or CNAP web sites. The key to our success in 2011 lies in making our issues known to those in the legislature. We need every NP to begin engaging their legislators in conversations about our issues. You can make a difference. Start today. If you have questions of concerns, feel free to contact me, Mary Gail Moody, Chair – Governmental Action Committee, at firstname.lastname@example.org.