The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), along with our coalition partners representing nursing, medicine, and the other health professions, has worked to improve policies outlined in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) proposed rule, CY 2020 Revisions to Payment Policies under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. AACN is pleased to see that the final rule reduces mandatory and duplicative medical record evaluation and management (E/M) documentation requirements, which resulted in two major wins for advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) and nursing students.

Specifically, the final rule includes AACN’s recommendation to enable APRNs and physician assistants who furnish and bill for their professional services to review and verify, rather than redocument, information included in the medical record by physicians, residents, nurses, students, or other members of the health care team. This is a monumental step in reducing burden and eliminating disparities in clinical training opportunities.

AACN’s second major successful recommendation to the rule pointed out that the proposed changes to E/M documentation only included three out of the four APRNs, omitting certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) who regularly complete comprehensive E/M documentation for patients. CMS is modifying the final rule to explicitly name Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Certified Nurse Midwife, and CRNA students as APRN students and also is amending the regulation to include CRNAs as a category of APRNs.

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This message was originally posted in the AACN News Watch. Read the full issue or subscribe here.

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