Long-awaited substance use recovery grant program passes Pa. House

(1 day ago)

The Pennsylvania House on Wednesday passed a bill establishing a lifetime grant program for substance use recovery. Read more

 

Venkat’s opioid overdose awareness toolkit bill passes PA House

(Jun 12, 2024)

HARRISBURG, June 12 – State Rep. Arvind Venkat’s bill that would require the creation of materials to circulate information about the ongoing opioid public health crisis passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives with a bipartisan majority today. The legislation, H.B. 1783 , would require the state Department of Health to consult with the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs to create a poster, to be displayed in public and private settings, which provides information about opioid overdose. The information would include: Signs of an opioid-related overdose. What to do if an opioid-related overdose occurs. Locating an agent to reverse opioid effects. Additional resources. “I’ve treated many patients in the throes of an opioid overdose as an emergency physician, and proactive measures to help stem the tide of this crisis are imperative,” Venkat, D-Allegheny, said. “I’m grateful to bipartisan House colleagues, especially Representative Jim Struzzi (R-Indiana), not only for their affirmative votes, but for their commitment to saving as many lives as possible with this legislation.” The legislation additionally would authorize the creation of a Lifetime Recovery from Substance Use Grant Program to assist in the development, expansion or improvement of recovery support services delivery in Pennsylvania. Spearheaded by state Reps. Jim Gregory, R-Blair/Huntingdon, and Read more

 

Benham PBM reform bill clears House Health Committee

(Jun 12, 2024)

Legislation to reel in pharmacy benefit managers advances Read more

 

Venkat’s legislation to ease restrictions on physician assistants voted out of committee unanimously

(Jun 12, 2024)

HARRISBURG, June 12 – State Rep. Arvind Venkat’s bills that would put a flexibility component in place for physician assistants and the supervising physicians they work with were voted out of the House Professional Licensure Committee unanimously today. The legislation ( H.Bs. 2294 and 2295 ) would amend the physician licensure acts in Pennsylvania and allow physician assistants to work with either classification of physician, a Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. Current law on the books mandates that physician assistants and supervising physicians must be licensed by the same state medicine board as the supervising physician. “These bills are commonsense measures that connect more doctors and physician assistants with the patients in need of their skills and expertise,” said Venkat, D-Allegheny. “As a physician-legislator, I’m committed to supporting my peers and helping to remove barriers to the highest quality of care.” The bills now head to the full House for consideration. Read more

 

Health Committee Voting Packet - June 12th, 2024

(Jun 11, 2024)

Health Committee Voting Packet - June 12th, 2024 Read more

 

Venkat’s health care reimbursement legislation passes House

(Jun 04, 2024)

HARRISBURG, June 4 – State Rep. Arvind Venkat’s bill that would require health insurers to offer multiple payment options to in-network health care providers for payment for clinical services and disclose any associated fees with each method of payment passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives with bipartisan support today. The legislation, H.B. 1867 , would eliminate electronic credit card reimbursements being the sole method of payment and allow health care providers to choose the payment option best suited to their needs. Electronic credit card reimbursements with mandatory fees would only be permitted if the in-network health care provider agrees to that arrangement. “Today, PA doctors, nurses and medical professionals alike are a step closer to receiving the full compensation they deserve for the high quality of care they provide every day,” Venkat, D-Allegheny, said. “I want to thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for their affirmative votes, both as a fellow legislator and as a practicing physician.” According to a ProPublica article , almost 60% of medical practices said they were compelled to pay fees for electronic payment at least some of the time. These fees can cost larger medical practices $1 million a year, and small clinics can lose as much as $100,000 due to the fees. The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration. Read more

 

Health Committee Voting Packet - June 5th 2024

(Jun 04, 2024)

Health Committee Voting Packet - June 5th 2024 Read more

 

Benham, Nelson hear concerns from Westmoreland pharmacists

(May 30, 2024)

Pharmacy owners say PBM reform needed to lower drug prices, drive market competition Read more

 

Venkat’s new legislation prioritizes timeliness in processing Medical Assistance applications and reimbursing long-term care facilities

(May 22, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 22 – State Rep. Arvind Venkat, D-Allegheny, has introduced a bill that would establish timelines for Medical Assistance applications to be approved or renewed for eligible individuals transitioning to long-term care facilities and compensate those facilities for all services provided during the application processing period. Per H.B. 2320 , the state Department of Human Services and county assistance offices would not only need to meet said benchmarks, but long-term care facilities could receive part of the funds owed to them faster and request a status update on an application(s) that is pending. The department could also end reimbursement to those facilities if a person’s Medical Assistance request is denied and claw back any previous interim payments in such circumstances. “The goodwill of certain long-term care facilities to provide essential care and services to residents while their eligibility for Medical Assistance is determined must be a two-way street,” Venkat said. “These institutions themselves literally cannot afford to remain in perpetual limbo and face the real prospect of losing hundreds of thousands of dollars because of delays in Medical Assistance eligibility determinations. As a physician-legislator, I’m committed to keeping long-term facilities financially viable and capable of doing their great work every day.” Venkat has also introduced legislation (H.B. 1867 ) that would require health Read more

 

House Health Committee Voting Meeting Packet - May 21, 2024

(May 21, 2024)

House Health Committee Voting Meeting Packet - May 21, 2024 Read more

 

Venkat introduces legislation to ease restrictions on physician assistants and eliminate print statement fees

(May 15, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 15 – State Rep. Arvind Venkat, D-Allegheny, has introduced bills that would put a flexibility component in place for physician assistants and the supervising physicians they work with and prohibit banks or other financial institutions from charging clients a fee for a paper copy of a statement. The first two pieces of legislation ( House Bills 2294 and 2295 ) would amend the physician licensure acts in Pennsylvania and allow physician assistants to work with either classification of physician, a Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. Current law on the books mandates that physician assistants and supervising physicians must be licensed by the same state medicine board as the supervising physician. “Cutting all the red tape and connecting medical professionals with patients that need their skills and expertise to recover is one of the foundational tenets of health care and my work as a physician-legislator,” Venkat said. “Doctors want to help as many people as they can, and my bills help to break down the barriers to this mission.” Venkat’s additional legislation ( H.B. 2292 ) would ban entities from assessing an additional fee, as high as $5 monthly, to customers who request a print version of a statement from a given entity. The bill would also specify that any person or entity would still be allowed to create incentives for a consumer to select an alternative to a paper statement. Read more

 

Pharmacy owners plead for policy reform on PBMs

(May 10, 2024)

Bipartisan bill would help local pharmacies stay in business Read more

 

Venkat’s health care reimbursement legislation approved by committee

(May 08, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 6 – State Rep. Arvind Venkat’s bill that would require health insurers to offer multiple payment options to in-network health care providers for payment for clinical services and disclose any associated fees with each method of payment was unanimously adopted by the PA House Insurance Committee today. The legislation, H.B. 1867 , would eliminate electronic credit card reimbursements being the sole method of payment and allow health care providers to choose the payment option best suited to their needs. Electronic credit card reimbursements with mandatory fees would only be permitted if the in-network health care provider agrees to that arrangement. “Administrative fees associated with only having electronic credit cards as the means of payment unnecessarily drains agreed-upon reimbursements received by hard-working doctors, nurses and other health professionals who have dedicated their lives to safeguarding the health of our community,” Venkat, D-Allegheny, said. “Let’s get our health care providers the full compensation they deserve and continue to support them in all their efforts.” According to a ProPublica article , almost 60% of medical practices said they were compelled to pay fees for electronic payment at least some of the time. These fees can also cost larger medical practices $1 million a year, and small clinics can lose as much as $100,000 due to the fees. The legislation now moves to the full Read more

 

Mayes home blood-pressure monitoring bill clears Pa. House

(May 06, 2024)

Legislation to cover remote blood-pressure monitors through Medicaid, CHIP Read more

 

A bill in the Pa. legislature could end non-compete agreements for most doctors

(Apr 30, 2024)

When Dr. Lorraine Rosamilia left her job at a dermatology practice in State College, she said the non-compete she'd signed 17 years ago banned her from working within 30 miles of her former office. Read more

 

The FTC banned non-compete agreements. Experts say Philly doctors should wait to shred their contracts.

(Apr 29, 2024)

Doctors should wait to rip up the employment contracts prohibiting them from going to work for competitors, experts are advising, even though the Federal Trade Commission voted last week to bar employers from imposing such restrictions on employees. Read more

 

Mayes bill to provide maternal and newborn supply kits advances in PA House

(Apr 29, 2024)

Legislation would establish state resource program for new parents Read more

 

House Health Committee Voting Meeting Packet - April 30, 2024

(Apr 29, 2024)

House Health Committee Voting Meeting Packet - April 30, 2024 Read more

 

Lawmakers discuss pharmacy policy reform in Moon

(Apr 24, 2024)

New bill would reel in Pharmacy Benefit Managers Read more

 

Health Committee advances Cephas bill to strengthen doula services in Pa.

(Apr 17, 2024)

HARRISBURG, April 17 – The PA House Health Committee today approved legislation authored by state Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., that would extend Medicaid coverage to doula services in the state. Under Cephas’ bill ( H.B. 1608 ), Medicaid would reimburse certified doulas for providing childbirth education and support services, including physical and emotional support, during pregnancy, labor and delivery and up to one year postpartum. “Research has shown that doula support leads to improved birth outcomes, including reduced rates of cesarean sections, shorter labor durations and higher rates of breastfeeding initiation. By providing continuous support throughout and after pregnancy, doulas contribute to safer and more positive birth experiences for mothers," Cephas said. "While some moms can afford doula services without insurance or have insurance that covers it, moms who receive their vital pregnancy care through Medicaid are not so lucky. This leads to a vast inequality in care for women who are already statistically at risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes, with Black women at the highest risk of maternal and infant mortality and morbidity compared to other racial and ethnic groups. This legislation would give these mothers a proven network of support needed to produce better mental and physical health outcomes during their birthing journey.” The bill also would establish a Doula Advisory Read more

 

Long-awaited substance use recovery grant program passes Pa. House
1 day ago

Venkat’s opioid overdose awareness toolkit bill passes PA House
Jun 12, 2024

Benham PBM reform bill clears House Health Committee
Jun 12, 2024

Venkat’s legislation to ease restrictions on physician assistants voted out of committee unanimously
Jun 12, 2024

Health Committee Voting Packet - June 12th, 2024
Jun 11, 2024

Venkat’s health care reimbursement legislation passes House
Jun 04, 2024

Health Committee Voting Packet - June 5th 2024
Jun 04, 2024

Benham, Nelson hear concerns from Westmoreland pharmacists
May 30, 2024

Venkat’s new legislation prioritizes timeliness in processing Medical Assistance applications and reimbursing long-term care facilities
May 22, 2024

House Health Committee Voting Meeting Packet - May 21, 2024
May 21, 2024

Venkat introduces legislation to ease restrictions on physician assistants and eliminate print statement fees
May 15, 2024

Pharmacy owners plead for policy reform on PBMs
May 10, 2024

Venkat’s health care reimbursement legislation approved by committee
May 08, 2024

Mayes home blood-pressure monitoring bill clears Pa. House
May 06, 2024

A bill in the Pa. legislature could end non-compete agreements for most doctors
Apr 30, 2024

The FTC banned non-compete agreements. Experts say Philly doctors should wait to shred their contracts.
Apr 29, 2024

Mayes bill to provide maternal and newborn supply kits advances in PA House
Apr 29, 2024

House Health Committee Voting Meeting Packet - April 30, 2024
Apr 29, 2024

Lawmakers discuss pharmacy policy reform in Moon
Apr 24, 2024

Health Committee advances Cephas bill to strengthen doula services in Pa.
Apr 17, 2024