Act of Jun. 23, 2004, P.L. 437, No. 44              Cl. 63
                             Session of 2004
                               No. 2004-44

     HB 304

                                  AN ACT

     Amending the act of December 20, 1985 (P.L.457, No.112),
        entitled "An act relating to the right to practice medicine
        and surgery and the right to practice medically related acts;
        reestablishing the State Board of Medical Education and
        Licensure as the State Board of Medicine and providing for
        its composition, powers and duties; providing for the
        issuance of licenses and certificates and the suspension and
        revocation of licenses and certificates; providing penalties;
        and making repeals," defining "home health care agency"; and
        providing for home health care services ordered by physicians
        from another state.

        The General Assembly finds and declares as follows:
            (1)  Home health care agencies are widely accepted by the
        general public because they allow people to age in place,
        maintain their independence and exercise decision making and
        personal choice.
            (2)  Pennsylvanians have the right to seek out the
        medical care they feel is most appropriate to meet their
            (3)  Nationally, 72% of home health care services
        recipients on average are elderly. Pennsylvania has the
        second oldest population in the nation, which is projected to
        grow from 16% to 25% over the next 20 years.
            (4)  Pennsylvania's home health care agencies provided
        direct services in the homes of nearly 500,000 Pennsylvania
        residents in 1999 alone.
            (5)  It is expected that the need for home health care
        services by Pennsylvania residents will continue to increase
        in the coming years.
            (6)  Some Pennsylvanians have been denied access to home
        health care services because their out-of-State physicians
        are not authorized to write orders for the delivery of home
        health care

        services within Pennsylvania.
            (7)  It is in the best interest of all Pennsylvanians
        that the Commonwealth allow duly licensed out-of-State
        physicians to order home health care services to be delivered
        by licensed Pennsylvania agencies in the Commonwealth.

        The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
     hereby enacts as follows:

        Section 1.  Section 2 of the act of December 20, 1985
     (P.L.457, No.112), known as the Medical Practice Act of 1985, is
     amended by adding a definition to read:
      Section 2.  Definitions.
        The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
     have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
     context clearly indicates otherwise:
        * * *
        Home health care agency."  An organization or part thereof
     licensed by the Department of Health under the act of July 19,
     1979 (P.L.130, No.48), known as the Health Care Facilities Act,
     staffed and equipped to provide nursing and at least one
     therapeutic service to persons who are disabled, aged, injured
     or sick in their place of residence. The agency may also provide
     other health-related services to protect and maintain persons in
     their own home.
        * * *
        Section 2.  The act is amended by adding a section to read:
      Section 36.2.  Home health care services ordered by physicians.
        (a)  General rule.--A home health care agency may deliver
     home health care services to a patient who resides in this
     Commonwealth based upon an order from a physician from another
     state who meets all of the following requirements:
            (1)  Holds a license in good standing conferred by the
        medical board or other medical licensing authority in another
        state, as shown by a photocopy or facsimile of the
        physician's valid license submitted to the home health care
        agency, and available upon request by the board or the
            (2)  Prescribes home health care services pursuant to an
        in-person physical examination of the patient performed
        within the jurisdictional boundaries of the state in which
        the physician is licensed.
        (b)  Duties of referring physician from another state.--A
     referring physician from another state shall ask the patient if
     the patient has a primary care physician in this Commonwealth.
     If so, the referring physician shall contact the primary care
     physician and obtain the concurrence of that individual for
     ordering home health care services. The referring physician
     shall make a notation of such contact in the patient's medical
        Section 3.  This act shall take effect in 60 days.

     APPROVED--The 23rd day of June, A. D. 2004.