April 12, 2019
New York Lawmaker Seeks to Improve Patient Safety Through New Regulation of Nurse Anesthetists
On April 8, New York Assembly Member Rodneyse Bichotte (D-42) introduced A 7100
, which would formally authorize nurse anesthetists’ administration of anesthesia only under the supervision of an immediately available anesthesiologist, or a physically present operating physician, qualified dentist, oral surgeon, or podiatrist. The measure would also amend the practice of medicine to limit the use of the title “anesthesiologist” to individuals licensed to practice medicine. According to Vilma Joseph, M.D., MPH, FASA, President of the New York State Society of Anesthesiologists, “patients, current and future, deserve the assurance that when someone calls themselves an anesthesiologist that they are a physician.”
A 7100 would limit the administration of anesthesia to qualified anesthesia practitioners and would define critical terms instrumental in the safe administration of anesthesia. The bill would authorize certification of nurse anesthetists and detail scope of practice parameters. Additionally, the legislation would limit the use of the terms nurse anesthetist and certified registered nurse anesthetist to those certified under the act.
Per Dr. Joseph, "we support recognizing the nurse anesthetist title in statute but like any health profession, the legislature must include the nurse anesthetists scope of practice in the law. Anesthesia is much safer today but ultimately it is a medical procedure and like any medical service, patients deserve to have a physician involved – especially when surgical anesthesia is administered.”
The American Society of Anesthesiologists commends Assembly Member Bichotte on her sponsorship of this comprehensive legislation.