In the News
Colorado joins 15 other states in affirming independent practice by certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs). A Colorado appeals court ruled on July 19 that CRNAs can serve Medicare patients without physician supervision at all of the state's critical access hospitals and 14 rural hospitals. In 2009, Colorado's governor asked the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to allow CRNAs to practice independently at these designated facilities, where anesthesiologists are in short supply. Studies have shown that CRNAs provide safe, high-quality care and have inherent value as providers in their own right. In a detailed concurrence statement, Judge David Furman wrote that the plaintiffs—the Colorado Medical Society and the Colorado Society of Anesthesiologists—“lacked standing in the case” against independent CRNA practice and that, in his view, the case went before the appeals court “simply because the plaintiffs do not like the funding decision by the governor.” To read the decision, go to http://bit.ly/SNYiLM.