2020 Legislative Session Week 1

In this week’s update:

  • Week 1 Recap
  • School Nurse Corps
  • Health System Financial Transparency

Upcoming Events

Week 1 Recap

The 2020 legislative session kicked off on Monday. It’s the second year of the biennium which means that it is a “short” 60-day session. New House Speaker Laurie Jinkins was sworn in on Monday – she is the first woman and first out lesbian Speaker of House. She is a strong advocate for access to health care, public health, as well as nursing and patient safety issues. Former Speaker Frank Chopp remains a member of the House of Representatives and is now sitting on several committees including House Health Care.

WSNA testified in House and Senate hearings on the Governor’s budget this week – speaking to the importance of new funding for the School Nurse Corps. We also provided comments on a couple policy bills of importance (more on that below).

For more on WSNA’s 2020 Legislative Priorities click here.

School Nurse Corps Funding

WSNA is supporting OSPI’s ask for an additional $2.75 million for the School Nurse Corps in the 2020 supplemental budget. This would assure a minimum one-day a week school nurse service in our state’s small, rural school districts. Over the last 20 years, funding for the School Nurse Corps has remained flat, even as student health conditions and the number of nursing care plans have drastically increased. The Governor’s Budget included $1.7 million in new funding for the School Nurse Corps.

Health System Financial Transparency

On Wednesday, House Bill 2036 had a hearing in the House Health Care Committee. This bill would increase financial disclosures around charity care and Community Benefit, facility fees, and affiliated organizations such as for-profit businesses held by non-profit health systems. It would require hospitals to disaggregate their data from a system-level – providing more detail on whether large health systems are complying with laws such as Community Benefit, intended to improve community health. WSNA testified in support of this bill along with several partners.

Advocacy Camp & WSNA Lobby Day

As news about our legislative priorities develop, watch for Action Alerts from WSNA regarding when to weigh in. Of course, one of the best opportunities to take action is by joining your fellow nurses in Olympia for WSNA Lobby Day to meet with your legislators face-to-face!

Upcoming Events

January 27
WSNA Advocacy Camp

More information and registration links are here.

February 6
WSNA Nurse Lobby Day

We are happy to offer 2.75 CNE contact hours this year!

More information and registration links are here.

Please look for regular email updates on legislative action as the legislative session gets underway – we look forward to your participation in the process!