American Nurses Association Applauds Nurses' MAT Prescribing Authority in SUPPORT (H.R. 6)
The newly enacted law underscores nurses' critical role in solving the opioid crisis
SILVER SPRING, MD – Today, President Donald Trump signed into law the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act (H.R. 6). The American Nurses Association (ANA) is pleased that SUPPORT underscores nurses' critical role in solving the opioid crisis by enabling nurse practitioners and physician assistants to prescribe buprenorphine permanently with a medication-assisted treatment (MAT) waiver. This MAT prescribing authority is extended for five years to the other advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) specialties: certified nurse-midwives, clinical nurse specialists and certified registered nurse anesthetists. SUPPORT will also deploy more health experts by providing student loan relief of up to $250,000 to individuals that pursue substance use disorder treatment professions in underserved areas.
ANA extends our gratitude to the professional nursing organizations and diligent congressional leaders that worked with us to pass SUPPORT with the key nursing provisions in both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate.
Nurses are central in identifying and solving public health crises. Empowering and authorizing nurses to practice to the full extent of their clinical training and education eliminates unnecessary roadblocks that impede access to lifesaving treatment. This is especially beneficial in communities devastated by drug overdose and addiction and in rural areas where patients rely on nurses for quality care.