Dear AZANA Members,
Earlier this year, AZANA worked to pass SB 1336, securing a significant victory for the profession. This was done by all members of this association, by all of our RC PAC Contributors, by our incredible government affairs team, by our AZANA GRC and Board of Directors. SB 1336 also gave us an opportunity to really define where we stand on real teamwork - not a hollowed-out version of teamwork dictated by an outside group.
This summer, administrators and hospital executives sought out AZANA's input on the potential impact of SB 1336. Our team was able to speak directly to the issue of surgeon liability and many other aspects of CRNA practice. At the time, our conversation was mostly theoretical and we were speaking of potential change.
Now that it's September, we're observing actual change. We are hearing directly from CRNAs who now have opportunities to care for patients that previously did not exist. Those phone calls earlier in the summer have resulted in real, new, practice opportunities for CRNAs. And it's not just CRNAs that are benefitting. We've heard from surgeons across the state happy to see the misperception of liability be dispelled. True to what I wrote earlier in the year, SB 1336 also benefits physician-owned practices who employ CRNAs. This increases job satisfaction for CRNAs because they are not inappropriately and artificially restricted from taking care of patients they care about. And of course - it's well documented that when all professionals use their full scope, patients see real benefits in cost-effective, timely, and accessible care - and patients are the first priority of CRNAs!
On the whole, Governor Ducey's signature on SB 1336 has created benefits for patients, CRNAs, physicians and surgeons. As it turns out, moving towards full-scope of practice regulations is good for everyone involved.
As your president, I'm grateful to be part of this association. I'm thankful to be part of an extremely talented and dedicated team, just one leader in a group of leaders, committed to removing barriers for CRNAs to utilize their full scope and give patients the full benefit of our education and experience. Our cause is not simply a "turf war" - in today's healthcare economy, it is a moral imperative that every healthcare professional be doing everything they can to benefit patients.
Joseph A. Rodriguez, CRNA, AZANA President, 2016-17