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Nursing Policy

“The function of the TNA is to initiate and influence legislation, 
governmental programs and health policy at the state and national levels.”

- TNA Bylaws, Article I, Section 3c

Since the Texas Nurses Association was founded in 1907, one of its primary purposes has been to represent and support all segments of nursing practice by working with the state legislature and stakeholders through its Government Affairs and nursing practice committees.

In 2015, TNA appointed a Policy Council and policy committees to explore nursing concerns and develop policy positions. In 2017, we added Expert Advisor groups and a Policy Fellowship program for DNP students. TNA strives to engage nursing students and support student policy advocacy.

In June, TNA held the 2019 Policy Summit where attendees learned the outcomes of the 86th Legislative Session and explored policy priorities for 2021 in interactive sessions. 

In addition, TNA has hosted Nurse Day at the Capitol biennially since 1999, welcoming Texas nurses and nursing students to Austin for education on issues the Texas Legislature will examine during the session. Nurses and students discuss those issues and proposed legislation with their state legislators and staff.

 TNA Policy Podcast



Nursing Policy

TNA 86th Texas Legislative Passed Bills Tracked

Texas BON 86th Regular Texas Legislative Session Legislative Report 

Download the 2019 NLAC Legislative Agenda

APRN (pdf)

  • Natural Disasters
  • Non-Opioid CSII
  • Discharge Prescriptions
  • Signatures

Download the APRN 1-pager
Download the Texans for Health Care Access 1-pager
Download APRN Education - SB 2438/HB 1792 (2019) 1-pager

Nursing Education (pdf)

  • Professional Nursing Shortage Reduction Program
  • Community College Baccalaureate Programs
  • Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Assistance Program

SB 358, Hinojosa (2019) - Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Program 1-pager
Download the Nursing Shortage Funding 1-pager
HB 2980, Howard (2019) - Graduate Nursing Education 1-pager

End of Life (pdf)

  • Background
  • TNA Position
  • Legislative History
  • ANA Resources

Maternal Mortality and Morbidity (pdf)

  • Legislative History
  • Perinatal Nurse Education
  • Discharge
  • AIM Bundles
  • Medicaid
  • Preconception Care
  • Racial Disparity and Bias

Mental Health (pdf)

  • Safe Workplace
  • Access to Patient Care
  • Mental Health Funding
  • Texas Peer Assistance Program for Nurses
  • Increased Use of Mental Health/Drug Courts
  • School Age & Young Adult Mental Health Screening

Eliminating PMH-APRN Practice Barriers Policy Brief by TNA DNP Fellow Mikayle Durant

Nursing Regulation (pdf)

  • Legislative History
  • Health Care Technology 
  • APRN Issues
  • Peer Review Committees
  • BON Just Culture

Workplace Advocacy (pdf)

  • Workplace Violence
  • Fatigue
  • Safe Staffing

Workplace Violence 1-pager (2019)

Policy Council

TNA Policy Process 2019-2021The 2019-2021 Texas Nurses Association Policy Council was appointed by TNA’s Board of Directors in July 2019 and met in late fall to determine the committees it would need to address the nursing and healthcare issues facing Texas over the next two years.

The three established Policy Council Committees are:

  • Nursing Education and Workforce
  • Nursing Regulation and Practice Authority
  • Workplace Advocacy and Practice

View Policy Council and Committee Members (TBA)

Over the next four to five months, these groups will explore and develop policy on some of the most pressing issues related to each committees’ area of professional practice, with input from hundreds of its members through the Expert Advisors. TNA's Expert Advisors are instrumental in assisting with the research that helps the committees fully explore the topics put before them to consider.

DNP Policy Fellowship (Limited Availability)

Thank you for your interest in the Texas Nurses Association DNP Policy Fellowship Program. The application period for 2019-2020 is now closed.

TNA offers this program to motivated DNP students who wish to work on nursing education and policy development throughout their DNP coursework.

At TNA, policy development happens through the Policy Council, specifically through the Policy Council’s committees.  The committees generally meet once a month by conference call to discuss policy development and research on specific topics.  DNP Policy Fellows will engage with the committees and be assigned a mentor to help guide and track their progress during their work with TNA.

Program requirements and expectations:

  • Policy Fellows must be an established TNA member
  • Fellows must attend assigned committee meetings
  • Fellows are expected to remain in close contact with their assigned mentor throughout the process.
  • Faculty advisors of Policy Fellows must be TNA members, and should be engaged and willing to intervene if expectations are not met.
  • Fellows must make a one-year commitment to TNA in order to properly understand and research policy development.
  • $250.00 participation fee

TNA can work with your school and your faculty to develop the fellowship into course credit, if

If you believe that you can fulfill the expectations above, please keep your eyes open for the next application period. Please consider the following program requirements below for application. Click the first tab above to learn about the Association's policy positions, and consider becoming an Expert Advisor to the policy committee(s) of interest in order to share resources and experience with virtually no time commitment.

Application requirements:

  • Resume/CV
  • Recommendation by faculty member
  • Course Syllabus
  • Statement of Interest – Please tell us why you would like to become a Policy Fellow and what policy issues interest you

2018 Fellows

Kristy Aleman, DPA, ACNP, APN, RN

Kristy is interested in reducing barriers to affordable, high quality care and increasing funding to the Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Program.

Advisor: Jessica Peck, DNP, APRN, CPNP-PC, CNE, CNL, FAANP

Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi

Raquel Armstrong, MBA, BSN, RNC-NIC, NE-BC

Raquel is interested in how professional nursing organizations impact change and policy reform as well as maternal mortality and opioid use.

Advisor: Nancy Crider, DrPH, RN, NEA-BC

University of Texas at Houston Health Science Center

Emily Carder, MSN, RN, WHNP-BC

Emily is interested in women’s health and access to postnatal care for behavioral health issues, especially postpartum depression and opioid use.

Advisor: Gayle Acton, PhD, RN

University of Texas at Austin

Barbara Chapman, MSN, APRN, FNP-C

Barbara is interested in increasing access to health care especially in underserved or rural areas across Texas.

Advisor: Ellen Fineout-Overholt, PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN

University of Texas at Tyler

Chiquesha Davis, MSN,

Chiquesha is interested in health policy and ways to decrease nurse anxiety while working with patients who are terminally ill.

Advisor: Colleen Marzilli, PhD, DNP, RN-BC, CCM, PHNA-BC, CNE, NEA-BC

University of Texas at Tyler

Gabrielle Davis, MSN, RN, CNE

Gabrielle is interested in reducing student attrition, improving graduation rates and developing a mentoring program for new nursing faculty.

Advisor: Ellen Fineout-Overholt, PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN

University of Texas at Tyler

Sonya Grigsby, MSN, APRN, AGACNP-BC

Sonya is interested in health care regulation and scope of practice.

Advisor: Ellen Fineout-Overholt, PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN

University of Texas at Tyler

Melynda Hutchings, MSN RN-BC

Melynda is interested in decreasing rates of childhood obesity and development of health care policy.

Advisor: Aimmee Dunnam, DNP, MSN, APRN, NNP-BC

University of Texas at Arlington

Cyndi Kelley, MSN, RNC-LRN

Cyndi is interested in helping develop or adapt policies focused on the improved care of infants with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.

Advisor: Ellen Fineout-Overholt, PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN

University of Texas at Tyler


Sha is interested in interdisciplinary approaches to management for HIV and Hepatitis C patients and treating mental health disorders.

Advisor: Eileen Giardino, PhD, RN, MSN

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Susan McKee, MSN, BSN, MeD, BS

Susan is interested in education issues including nursing shortage, faculty issues and the nursing school experience of students.

Advisor: Beth Mastel-Smith, PhD, MS, RN

University of Texas at Tyler

2017 Projects

Coming soon.

Join the Capitol Corps! 

While TNA members work hard at the state capitol in Austin, we also need lots of grassroots, local help! Join the Capitol Corps to be a local legislative liaison between your TNA Government Affairs Committee representative and the lawmakers who represent your region. During the legislative session, we may ask you to reach out to your legislator(s) to let them know about issues that may be coming up for a vote. When the Texas Legislature is not in session, we’ll ask you to stay in contact and develop a relationship with your state lawmaker so they know that they can count on you to be an expert on nursing and health care-related issues.

Send an email to and let us know you're interested!

Become an Expert Advisor!

An expert advisor is a TNA member who engages in nursing policy, with zero time commitment and travel requirements, by agreeing to receive periodic emails from TNA about the selected committee meetings’ agendas. We will ask expert advisors (via email) to submit any comments, questions, or thoughts you may have on the topics set out in the agenda that you think the committee should consider or discuss. It’s TNA’s no-nonsense way of crowdsourcing discussion on nursing topics that matter to you.

If you are a TNA member and you would like to be a nursing policy expert advisor, please fill out the Policy Expert Advisors Form below.

Texas Nurses Association

Texas Affiliate of ANA | 4807 Spicewood Springs Rd., Bldg 3, Suite 100, Austin TX 78759

800.862.2022 | 512.452.0645 |