Hello NHANA members,

I wanted to let everyone know that I am a candidate for the position of AANA President-Elect.  The election ballots will be going out via e-mail around May 8th.  Please watch for this e-mail as I am kindly asking for your vote.

I was called by the AANA in early December after the AANA nominations were closed to run for this office because there we very few CRNAs qualified and my opponent was running unopposed. It took me about ten days to accept this nomination from the AANA nominations committee and that is why I am on the ballot, and also NH president-elect.  I would like to say I did not take this lightly and did not step up to fill up the ballot.  I am in it to win it, and I do believe I am the best candidate.  Please check the AANA web site next week for a video of my speech at the AANA Midyear meeting and my position statement.

I have just returned from Washington D.C. with Sandy Keddy CRNA our state president.  We were able to visit our 2 Senators and our 2 Congresswoman’s offices to provide them with information on what is going on with CRNAs nationally and back home in New Hampshire.  Here are some of the issues. 

Sandy spoke about the local Medicare Administrative Contractors (Mac) carriers and how the Local Coverage Determinations (LCD) by state are trying to reimburse CRNAs less or whatever they want.  Sandy also spoke on the need to keep rural pass through funding for CRNAs with CRNAs, and not sign on to the bill the MDAs want, to increase funding for them to supervise CRNAs at these rural sites.

I then spoke on the VA issue and how all APRN’s were initially written into the VA hand book and at the final hour only the CRNAs were pulled out.  They are very concerned about coverage at our VA hospitals and although the MDAs say there are plenty of anesthesia providers working at the VA, there are many locums MDA’s employed supervising CRNAs and costing us millions of dollars.  The truth is there was an article last August saying that at the Denver VA hospital,  90 plus surgeries were cancelled due to lack of anesthesia providers.  I also reiterated to our legislators being a veteran, that if CRNAs can do the vast majority of anesthesia independently in harm’s way on the battle field, that they certainly should be able to care for our veterans independently in our own country. 

I also spoke on the opioid crisis and I have also spoken to pain practice CRNAs in New Hampshire and let them know that we need primary care providers to transition patients to CRNA chronic pain care providers early on in their treatment and not after 30,60, or 90 days.  By this time, it becomes very hard to treat this pain. 

Sandy also spoke about the opioid crisis and CRNAs using less opioids and providing anesthesia care with ERAS and PEDI ERAS protocols.  We were also fortunate enough to have a Georgetown University CRNA student lobby with us. She is from New Hampshire, Maggie McDonell SRNA spoke on the society for opioid free anesthesia (SOFA) which is an all CRNA society.  I am also a member of a HRSA task force in DC trying to deal with issues on this crisis. I covered Nantucket Cottage Hospital for a week a month ago and dealt with 3 fentanyl overdoses 3 nights in a row that needed to be intubated and flown off the island.  This is becoming a very serious concern in this country, and we need CRNAs to help resolve some of these issues.

We were very proud of SRNA Maggie taking the lead on Title VIII funding. This funding goes directly into nursing education funding students and Universities for their education.  It  is now on the chopping block.  There is no doubt in my mind that Maggie will be an excellent NHANA board member when she completes her CRNA program.

It is nice to say the NHANA is doing well with Sandy Keddy at the helm.  We can always use new members on the board and new ideas.  Please let her know.

Once again, as a long term board member to the NHANA I am kindly asking for your vote.

Thank you!