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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: April 9, 2019 08:57 AM
From: Representative Liz Hanbidge
To: All House members
Subject: Ending the Waiver Waitlist
As of January 2019, there were over 13,000 individuals with intellectual disabilities on the waitlist to receive HCBS waiver benefits. Home- and community-based services (HCBS) waivers – under our state’s Medical Assistance program – are one of the tools used to ensure individuals with disabilities and older adults receive the care they require. HCBS waivers provide funding to help individuals access specialized health care, medical equipment, mental health crisis intervention, supported employment, and many other vital support services. However, far too many eligible individuals and families have been waiting for years to receive their benefits.

As state lawmakers, we have a moral duty to protect and provide for the most vulnerable Pennsylvanians. Forcing thousands of disabled individuals to wait years to gain access to critical services is unacceptable. To address this problem, I will be introducing legislation to require that individuals receive their benefits no later than 90 days after being deemed eligible for the HCBS waiver program. This bill will virtually end the HCBS waiver waitlist and will enable our most vulnerable citizens to access essential, long-awaited care.

We must not neglect our duty to advocate for the rights of those who cannot fight for themselves. I hope you will join me in correcting this injustice by supporting this legislation and finally allowing families to provide their dependent loved ones with proper care.

For more information, please visit pawaitinglistcampaign.org.

Introduced as HB1508