|Posted:||May 3, 2017 10:07 AM|
|From:||Representative Judy Ward and Rep. Paul Schemel|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Women's Health Funding -- Former House Bill 1623|
|After a passage of the Affordable Care Act, many of the services which were previously funded by Federal funds earmarked for family planning services are now available with no co-payment requirement. This does not change the need for additional funding for women’s health services, but does require that the Commonwealth reprioritize where the funds are used.
As a result, in the near future, we will be re-introducing legislation that will provide direction to the Pennsylvania Department of Health as to how it must prioritize the allocation of public funds for family planning purposes. Effectively, this legislation will favor more conventional health care providers over unconventional providers when allocating public funds for women’s health.
Currently, limited federal and state public funding exists for family planning and preventative health services for women. To ensure maximized use of funding, our legislation will prioritize the distribution to the most efficient point-of-service health care providers and encourage complete medical records for all services provided to women.
Under our proposal, public entities will receive the highest priority for receiving such funds, followed by non-public hospitals and federally qualified health centers, rural health clinics and non-public health providers that have their primary purpose as the provision of primary health care. Women’s health services are considered primary health care and such services should be encouraged to be provided by those health care professionals who participate in electronic health records and integrated health systems.
This legislation is focused on improving the quality of health care for women and will not reduce the level of public funding allocated for women’s health services. This legislation has also been introduced by Senator John Eichelberger as Senate Bill 300 this session. We hope you will join us in co-sponsoring this important legislation.
Introduced as HB1542