The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will begin making reimbursement payments to five hospitals for the training of advanced practice RNs.
CMS will make payments out of $200 million in available funds from the Affordable Care Act over a four-year period, helping the hospitals offset the costs of clinical training for APRN students.
The Graduate Nurse Education Demonstration allowed for a maximum of five participants. On July 30, CMS announced that the following organizations had been selected after submitting applications as called for in March (see www.Nurse.com/Article/GNEDemonstration): Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia), Duke University Hospital (Durham, N.C.), Scottsdale (Ariz.) Healthcare Medical Center, Rush University Medical Center (Chicago) and Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center Hospital (Houston).
Increasing the number of APRNs is a way to increase the base of primary care providers in this country, according to a CMS fact sheet. In the past, the cost of clinical training has limited the ability of hospitals and other healthcare providers to accept more APRN students into their settings for clinical training.
The Graduate Nurse Education Demonstration was mandated by Section 5509 of the Affordable Care Act. The primary goal of the demonstration, operated by the CMS Innovation Center, is to increase the provision of qualified clinical training to APRN students.
The training included in the demonstration will provide APRNs with the clinical skills necessary to provide primary care, preventive care, transitional care, chronic care management and other services appropriate for Medicare beneficiaries.
The participating hospitals must partner with accredited schools of nursing and non-hospital community-based care settings. Under certain circumstances, the hospitals may also partner with other hospitals to expand the number of APRN students trained.
Payments to the participating hospitals will be linked directly to the number of additional APRNs that the hospitals and their partnering entities train as a result of their participation in the demonstration. The payment will be calculated on a per-student basis, comparing previous enrollment levels in APRN training programs with enrollment under the demonstration.
The need for primary care access is especially critical in underserved areas of the country. CMS aims not only to increase the overall number of primary care providers, but also to bring new primary care access to underserved areas of the country. Hospitals participating in the demonstration must partner with two or more community-based care settings and must conduct at least half the clinical training in such settings. These settings may include federally qualified health centers or rural health clinics.
Students receiving training funded by the demonstration will be encouraged to practice in non-hospital settings, including in underserved areas of the country.
Additional information about the demonstration is available at http://innovations.cms.gov/initiatives/GNE/.