WASHINGTON, D.C., December 1, 2008 — Jones Public Affairs, Inc., a healthcare public affairs agency in Washington, D.C., announced today that it has been named the public relations agency of record for the Coalition for Patients’ Rights (CPR).  As part of a multi-faceted, three year communications strategy, Jones Public Affairs will provide the Coalition with a broad range of communications support, including message development, issues management, media relations, public affairs and crisis communications.

A coalition of 35 organizations representing more than 3 million licensed healthcare professionals, the CPR was established in 2007 in response to divisive efforts by the American Medical Association (AMA) and other physician groups to limit the non-physicians’ scope of practice—the range of healthcare-related activities and services which a healthcare professional is educated, certified or licensed to provide.

“Many people don’t realize the role provider options play in ensuring access to safe and affordable health care,” said Maureen Shekleton, Ph.D., R.N., F.A.A.N., the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.  “In the face on ongoing efforts to limit the role of many health care providers, it is essential that we help educate consumers about their rights and the unnecessary burden these limitations will place on millions of patients, especially those in rural and underserved areas.”

The CPR is committed to advocating for the practice rights of its members for the sake of their patients who rely on them for the many and varied services they provide.  By limiting the scope of practice of these integral practitioners, the AMA is not only limiting the practitioner’s right to practice, but also the patient’s right to the quality care these trained professionals can provide.

“Jones Public Affairs demonstrated both a deep understanding and a strategic, innovative approach to countering the physician lead movement to impede, rather than enhance, patient access to quality care,” continued Shekleton.  “We are looking forward to a successful partnership with Jones Public Affairs and applaud their passion for our cause.”

Carrie Jones, Managing Partner and Principal of Jones Public Affairs, said the agency’s depth of experience with healthcare coalitions makes the agency an excellent match for the CPR’s communications needs.  “Access to affordable healthcare is a growing concern among consumers,” she said.  “We are looking forward to working with the CPR to develop and disseminate messages supporting a system of cooperative patient care and patient choice.”

Jones Public Affairs offers a full-range of services, including media relations, digital media, advocacy relations, medical relations and policy outreach.