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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: January 9, 2019 10:28 AM
From: Senator Judy Ward
To: All Senate members
Subject: Community-Based Health Care Act
I plan to introduce legislation that was introduced last session by Representative Matthew Baker as House Bill 644 that would remove the cap on funds which can be obtained by federally qualified health centers (FQHCs).

In May of 2013, the General Assembly approved the Community-Based Health Care Act which directed funds to support nonprofit health care centers in the Commonwealth. To qualify as a health care center for this act the facility must provide care to medically underserved areas with a patient population below 200% of the federal poverty level. Many of these facilities are FQHCs or FQHC lookalikes.

At the time of the legislation, it was determined that there should be a cap (25%) on the amount which is distributed to FQHCs in order to provide more access to other health care centers existing in the Commonwealth or to encourage the development of such health care centers. Since the passage of Act 10 of 2013, FQHCs and other health care centers have utilized these dollars to serve some of the most vulnerable in the Commonwealth.

This measure would remove the artificial 25% limitation on funds for FQHCs distributed in accordance with the Community-Based Health Care Act. Many times the only applicants for these dollars are FQHCs as they are the only health centers capable of providing the services.

During the 2017-18 legislative session, HB 644 was approved by the House of Representatives.

Please join me in cosponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as SB273