Nurse Anesthetists swarm Florida’s capitol complex, rally for expanded privileges, fewer restrictions

by | Jan 29, 2020

A group of nearly 200 Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) swarmed Tallahassee’s Capitol on Tuesday, rallying to emphasize the role Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) play within Florida’s health care system by increasing access to health care, lowering health care costs and maintaining patient quality of care. They were joined by Representative Cary Pigman, who is sponsoring HB 607, a bill that would allow all APRNs, including CRNAs and nurse practitioners, to practice to the full extent of their education and training without physician supervision and protocols.

“It is time for Florida to modernize its healthcare delivery system by ensuring that Floridians have full access to healthcare, particularly in rural areas that are often underserved,” said Rep. Pigman, who is also an emergency medicine physician. “This legislation recognizes the extensive education and training these health professionals receive and the vital role they play in every healthcare setting.”

According to a press release from the Florida Association of Nurse Anesthetists, “the bill has the full support of House Speaker Jose Oliva, who has made modernizing the health care delivery system in Florida a top priority.”

Oliva has underpinned his support for the bill by pointing out a potential shortfall of up to 55,000 physicians at a time when the national population of senior citizens will be at its highest.

“I have called out the health care industrial complex because I believe it can do better for patients – consumers of health care services. I made clear my support for independent practice for APRNs because it will improve access and affordability for patients. It will address the very real issue of primary care shortages across our state, and it will bring Florida among the majority of states that are already benefitting from independent practice,” said Oliva. “With the endless sea of white coats flooding the Capitol, and the support from statewide businesses and organizations, I am assured that the House is on the right path by prioritizing HB 607.”

Currently, 30 states and the District of Columbia have acted to remove restrictions on APRNs with legislation pending in multiple states to remove restrictions.  APRNs are also able to practice without state-mandated restrictions in the Veterans Health Administration, Indian Health Services and the United States Military.

CRNA Day takes place annually at the Tallahassee Capitol and is sponsored by the Florida Association of Nurse Anesthetists. It gives CRNAs the opportunity to meet with their lawmakers and to educate the public about the role CRNAs take in providing safe and effective anesthesia care for every patient.

“I can’t thank our champions Speaker Oliva and Rep. Pigman enough for their unwavering support throughout the years,” said FANA President Jose Castillo III, PhD, MSNA, CRNA, APRN. “Florida, like other states continues to face a shortage of primary care providers and anesthesia providers. Florida has more than 34,000 licensed APRNs, including more than 5,400 CRNAs, who work in all practice settings including hospitals, other health care facilities, and in the offices of other health care providers. We are only asking to be allowed to help our patients by practicing to the full extent of our education and training without supervision.”


  1. Doc Shane

    If you want the same rights and privileges as a physician go to medical school. Period. Not cut corners of fast tracks to providing the most efficient and safe care for your patients. if you truly value their well being and safety, the long arduous years behind a proper MEDICAL education should not be too daunting. Instead fast track overnight NURSING degrees pushing for independent practice without near the amount of training and/or background with fraudulent studies backing their claims

  2. Anonymous

    There is ZERO quality data to support CRNA autonomy. Cochrane Review did a metanalysis of all studies (for and against) CRNA autonomy and found that there was no SAFE way to draw any conclusion supporting independent CRNA practice bc studies were so severely biased and not controlled at all.

    Floridians, you are very possibly endangering the health of anyone undergoing surgery by allowing someone with 1/4 the clinical training of a doctor to provide anesthesia completely unsupervised.

    Hopefully this gamble works out

  3. Anonymous

    For those not aware, The Cochrane Review is one of the Preeminent sources in medicine to weigh and comment on major issues by looking at ALL available data on any given subject. It is non partisan. None of the authors of this paper were anesthesiologists or CRNAs and had no conflict of interest.

  4. Crna argument

    Stop trolling

    We are proven to be safe practitioners and trained the exact same way as Anesthesiologists
    You know how I know? Because I help train them!!!
    They are clueless as CA-1 out of medical school lol
    So don’t act like your superior
    Anesthesia is anesthesia
    I learned airway the same
    In fact Anesthesiolgost taught me! Guess who taught you?
    I have to be board certified and you don’t. There limited access of care to patients. I intubate and extubate by myself while my attending is in the break room drinking coffee
    We are a proven safety provider. Look at the numbers. We are not trying to take the Anestgesiologist job. We are trying to expand care and access for patients.
    Also why shouldn’t I practice within my full scope?
    What did you learn about in medical school that I didn’t learn? With pathophysiology pharmacology anatomy and physiology chemistry

    Please explain to me what you know about anesthesia I don’t?
    I learned from the same books you did
    And by the way I had more anesthesia exams then you did

    We are both competent providers and there is enough work for us all you want to make half a million a year doing the same job I do?

    There is proven safety. Look at all the hospitals that just have CRNAs or those CRNAs in opt out states. Or those signed off by a “doctor” of any practice.

    Look at dentists
    I train them also
    They get? 6 months of Anestheisa training and they are allowed to practice solo
    They didn’t go to med school

    Med school is not the gateway to safe practice. You feel threatened that’s really your only argument. But we are here for patient care, as I hope you are as well. Thank you

  5. DMuscat

    Horse manure!
    CRNA’s are the workhorse of the Anesthesia world. CRNA’s can outwork and out perform the physicians.
    Sleep with a Pro
    Sleep wit a CRNA

  6. Physician

    Wow the hubris of the crna knows no bounds… arrogance will only get you so far midlevels. When stuff gets bad (as it often does with complicated cases in sick patients) I want my loved one in the hands of a properly trained physician (not a undertrained over confident millennial). Instead of advancing your career through legislation go to medical school, residency, and fellowship… then we can talk

  7. CRNA

    Ok “physician” we do more airways, arterial lines, central lines etc then you ever do. We are the first line of defense. I work with residents and fellows lol, please tell me what they learn? Please! Because I’m there teaching them and I’ve done 1000 times the airways they have ever touched

    Why is it ok to let chiropractors, dentists pharmacists, physical therapists to be doctors and work Independent? They didn’t go to med school.

    So now your saying millennials are incompetent? I’m not a millennial but that isn’t even on the roster for today sir!

    I do open heart, independently AND your drinking coffee in the break room.

    We are competent safe practitioners
    Read Barash or M&M again, there must be something you missed

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