COLUMBUS – State Rep. Jon Cross (R-Kenton) wants to allow Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) to be utilized more by health care facilities throughout the state. The legislation, House Bill 224, passed out of the Ohio House by a vote of 94-2.
The bill intends to clarify Ohio CRNA scope of practice by allowing facilities and medical staff to use CRNAs in all phases of anesthesia care in a way that will be the most efficient and cost effective for patients.
“The main purpose of the legislation is ensuring the CRNA scope of practice in Ohio is consistent with CRNAs education, training, and national certification,” said Cross. “I want to thank joint sponsor Representative Shane Wilkin for his work on this legislation as this will give these facilities the ability to utilize CRNAs as they see fit through the credentialing process.”
Under House Bill 224, the legislation:
.Clarifies CRNA scope of practice to include ordering drugs, tests, treatments, fluids, and diagnostic tests in the perioperative period, when specific conditions are met;
.Permits a CRNA to direct RNs, LPNs, and Respiratory Therapists to provide supportive care within the perioperative period and when performing clinical support functions;
.Requires a facility policy to establish standards and procedures to be following by CRNAs when performing specific functions;
.Allows supervising physicians to opt-out of CRNA expanded authority if they believe it is in the best interest of a patient.
In Ohio, over 150 facilities have CRNAs as the sole anesthesia providers that allow them to offer stabilization services, especially within the rural and underserved urban areas in the state.
“CRNAs are actually primary providers of anesthesia care in traditional hospital surgical suites and obstetrical delivery rooms,” said Cross. “It is important we give medical professionals and many of these facilities the chance to utilize CRNAs to their full potential of training and education, which will then give the best possible care to Ohio patients.”