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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: April 23, 2020 01:17 PM
From: Senator Katie J. Muth
To: All Senate members
Subject: Ensuring Sufficient Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and Sanitation Supplies for Reopening Pennsylvania
In the near future, I will introduce legislation that will create an online portal for the reporting and procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) and cleaning and sanitation supplies.  
Pennsylvania needs a data-driven strategy that will enable businesses to safely reopen to both employees and customers. To open businesses without a comprehensive understanding of the PPE and cleaning supplies necessary to follow CDC, OSHA, and PA Department of Health guidelines during this pandemic will endanger the lives of many Pennsylvanians, especially our frontline workers. To keep Pennsylvanians safe and healthy, we need a platform to support our business community and connect them to reliable sources of the supplies they need.  
My legislation will create a public portal to allow businesses, non-profits, governmental entities, emergency services and healthcare systems operating according to life-sustaining designation under the Governor’s order to report specific needs for PPE and sanitation supplies.  The portal will be jointly managed by DCED, DOH, and PEMA and be housed by DCED on their publicly-facing website. 
As part of that portal, manufacturers, supply chain providers, universities with manufacturing capabilities, and other entities will be able to register as an essential product supplier for life-sustaining businesses. 
The departments will make a determination about what suppliers are able to provide essential products according to CDC, OSHA, PA DOH and other standards for each of the following business designations: (1) the healthcare industry; and (2) other businesses. This will enable companies to work from a list of certified manufacturers and suppliers for procurement of PPE and cleaning and sanitation supplies based on their level of need and standards.  
Suppliers may include manufacturers, distributors, retailers, volunteer organizations (including non-profit organizations and faith-based organizations), and private citizens with capability to provide adequate PPE and/or cleaning and sanitation supplies. 
The state will continue coordinating healthcare PPE needs across health systems per Governor Wolf’s order on April 8, 2020 to Ensure the Efficient Allocation and Effective Use of Critical Medical Resources and through the Critical Medical Supplies Procurement Portal. 
The legislation will also require that, after the Governor lifts restrictions on businesses, businesses not currently considered to be life-sustaining and that wish to reopen must submit to the departments the following:   
  • The amount and types of PPE they have and what they estimate they need on a regular basis to operate within CDC, OSHA and PA DOH guidelines;  
  • The amount and types of cleaning and sanitation supplies they have and what they estimate they need on a regular basis to operate within CDC, OSHA, and PA DOH guidelines;  
  • Their cleaning and sanitation strategies based on CDC guidelines and DOH orders from April 6, 2020 and April 15, 2020;  
  • Social distancing mitigation strategies and staffing levels to accomplish strategies; and  
  • Information identifying where insufficient supplies or staffing create an inability to operate safely in accordance with all orders of the Governor and DOH related to physical operations as a life-sustaining business.  
The portal will also have an anonymous frontline worker reporting portal for employees who believe their companies are not in compliance with CDC guidance and DOH and Governor directives and orders, including mandates to supply PPE, regular cleaning and sanitation, and social distancing plans for safe physical operation. Reporting will be synced with State Police and local government law enforcement for purposes of investigation and enforcement. 
Businesses will be required to maintain their plans for safe worker strategies, including a daily log of supplies provided to employees, daily cleaning and sanitation schedules, including locations cleaned, and any social distancing mitigation strategies implemented to stop the spread of COVID-19 within their physical location. This information must be kept on site and provided to law enforcement or departmental officials for inspection when requested.  
Please join me in cosponsoring this life-saving piece of legislation.  ​

Introduced as SB1221