Legislative Initiatives

Saving Millions

In an effort to help the public and lawmakers understand the unique role of the emergency department team and to bolster support to overcome the many challenges we face, ACEP launched a campaign in May 2013 called "Saving Millions." The campaign includes a series of print ads, radio messages and coordinated editorials in influential communications nationwide. To learn more, click on the "Saving Millions" banner above.

Call To Action--Policy & Advocacy Committee

Every day MNACEP members engage through their work the MNACEP Mission: To preserve health and save lives in Minnesota by promoting the highest quality of emergency medical care. Today, we ask MNACEP members to activate MNACEP's Vision to be recognized as part of the health solution through legislative advocacy and highly engaged members.

Please consider participating in MNACEP's 2014 Policy & Advocacy Committee. For additional information, or to participate on the committee, contact Shari Augustin.

Policy and Advocacy Committee 2014 Topics

In an effort to establish sound policy decisions to present to the MN Legislature and other entities developing policy that impacts emergency departments.

Legislative Initiatives 

  • Advanced Practice Registered Nurse issue: The APRN coalition in MN is requesting changes to state statute that would allow more independent practice of the APRN.
  • Physician Assistant Proposed legislation: This proposal would allow a doctor to supervise an unlimited amount of PA's. Currently they can have a 1-5 ratio.
  • Naloxone administered by first responders and lay person: This proposal would allow properly trained individuals with a prescription to administer Naloxone to a suspected Opioid over dose.
  • Mandated Flu vaccine: This proposal by the MN Hospital Association would mandate flu shots in all hospital settings as a patient safety issue.
  • Trauma and EMS Level of Readiness funding: This proposal supports a level of readiness infrastructure for trauma, EMS and training costs.

State Agency Policy Initiatives 

  • Nurse staffing ratio study: MN department of health has been tasked with completing a study and making recommendations to the legislature in 2015.
  • Workers Compensation Program: The department of labor and industry has completed a study and will now complete more work around policy and legislative changes.
  • Emergency Department Study: The department of health will be conducting a study on how patients access the ED. MNACEP will need to be very involved.

Support Minnesota Emergency Physician Action Committee (MEPAC)

MNACEP Members: We are excited about the start-up of the new MNACEP sponsored political action committee, the Minnesota Emergency Physician Action Committee (MEPAC). The changing environment of health care and legislation effecting emergency medicine has made it essential that our voice be heard by Minnesota legislators. The purpose of the non-partisan MEPAC is to aid emergency physicians in the quality care of patients through influence on legislation. It is important for us as physicians to play a vital role in health care legislation affecting our practice in emergency medicine.

I hope that you will consider contributing any amount to the MEPAC in order that we can start this important process. Your contribution can be sent to:
Dr. Andrew Zinkel, MEPAC Treasurer 
Department of Emergency Medicine, Regions Hospital
640 Jackson Street
St. Paul, MN 55101

Thank you for your consideration,
Bill Heegaard, MD, FACEP
President, MNACEP

Current And Past Minnesota ACEP Legislative Initiatives Include:

1) Supported legislation passed by the House and Senate to stop a scheduled 4.4 percent cut to physician Medicare payments.

  • Lobbying for legislative action to correct the flawed formula used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to set physician Medicare payment rates

2) Led the successful effort to overturn a CMS directive allowing states to limit the number of ED visits made by Medicaid recipients. 

  • Informed media of CMS action and its consequences
  • Provided information to Senate leaders
  • Brought together a coalition of hospital and physician groups to lobby against directive

3) Continuing to work for medical liability reform

  • ACEP Board members agreed not to provide expert witness testimony
  • Promoting ACEP policy on expert witness qualifications

4) Continue to work for solutions to the overcrowding crisis

  • Developing policy paper with The Joint Commission organizations
  • Co-sponsoring symposium with The Joint Commission seeking solutions
  • Issued joint advisory with the American Hospital Association detailing immediate strategies to help ease overcrowding
  • Initiated series of meetings in Washington, DC with The Joint Commission, AMA, and the American Public Health Association to develop strategies
  • Successful lobbying effort  to insure auto no fault remains a payer of EM services in MN
  • Successful lobbying effort to keep the MN Trauma System intact

5) Representing emergency medicine on Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) task force that is developing a new methodology to eliminate the need for documentation guidelines.

LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

For your convenience, below are your chapter's Legislative Updates. 

February 2014
November 2013
October 2013