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Senator Collins Advocacy for America's Nurses and their Patients Earns Her Honors from National Nurses Organization

American Nurses Association Presents Senator Collins with the Congressional Nurse Advocate Award

              WASHINGTON, DC—Earlier today, the American Nurses Association (ANA), which represents the interests of our nation’s 3.1 million registered nurses, today presented Senator Collins with the “Congressional Nurse Advocate Award.”  This is the first year the award was presented to a U.S. Senator.  Irene Eaton, President of the American Nurses Association-Maine, presented Senator Collins with the award.

            The ANA commended Senator Collins for her leadership in the areas of health and nursing through her work on the Senate Appropriations Committee, as Ranking Member of the Special Committee on Aging, and as a Member of the Senate Nursing Caucus. The organization applauded her work to strengthen home health care, her support of the Medicare program, and her efforts to address issues related to diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.  Senator Collins has also been an ardent supporter of increased funding for nurse workforce and development programs.

            Senator Collins is the author of legislation to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries get the home health care they need and when they need it.  Her bill allows advanced practice nurses to order home health services for their patients. Today, even when a nurse practitioner or other advanced practice nurse is the patient’s primary care provider, a physician must still order home health services. The current process can delay important home health services.

            Upon accepting her award, Senator Collins commended the work of our nation’s nurses. “The nursing profession represents the largest segment of our health care workforce. You work on the front lines of patient care in a wide variety of health care settings. As such, you are the eyes and ears of our health care system and serve as critically important advocates for patients and their families. That is why I have been such a strong champion of the nursing profession.”