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PAFP Government & Practice Advocacy Committee
State Legislative Advocacy for Family Medicine

The PAFP advocates on state government matters of importance on behalf of its members and the patients they serve.  For information and updates, please join our Governmental & Practice Advocacy Committee group on PAFP Connect, or advocate online on specific topics via SpeakOut (below).

Governmental & Practice Advocacy Committee

This committee guides our policy positions on health care legislation and regulations. For PAFP members interested in joining please visit our PAFP Leadership page.

SpeakOut

The PAFP uses SpeakOut, an advocacy tool developed by the American Academy of Family Physicians, to distribute Advocacy Alerts to members as needed. Click here for more information on how this advocacy tool works (members only).

Current SpeakOut alert:  The newly introduced Senate Bill 25 would eliminate the important patient safeguard of a required written collaborative agreement between a nurse practitioner (NP) and two physicians in Pennsylvania; a House version is also expected. Use the AAFP's Speak Out tool to tell your legislator to oppose this bill.  


Nurse Practitioner Independence

PAFP opposes legislation that would eliminate collaborative agreements. Sen. Camera Bartolotta (R-Washington) is the prime sponsor of SB 25 and Rep. Jesse Topper (R-Bedford) is the prime sponsor of HB 100.  SB 25 passed the Senate on 4/26/17.

Health Insurer Credentialing Reform

PAFP supports HB 125, introduced by House Health Committee Chairman Matt Baker (R-Tioga),     that would standardize the credentialing form and set a 30-day time limit for insurers to process application or else grant provisional status.  HB 125 was approved by the House Health Committee on 4/4/17 and awaits further action in the House. 

Prior Authorization Reform

PAFP supports HB 1293 that would provide advancements and reduce administrative waste in seeking prior authorization by implementing standardized definitions and electronic communications.  Rep. Marguerite Quinn (R-Bucks) is the prime sponsor.  The bill was introduced 5/1/17 and is in the House Insurance Committee. 

Pennsylvania’s Budget Deficit and the Primary Health Care Practitioner Line Item

PAFP opposes the Governor’s plan to move this line items from the Department of Health to the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA).  From this nearly $5 million line item, the Primary Health Care Loan Repayment Program and grants to strengthen the Commonwealth’s health care infrastructure are funded.  This includes a grant administered by PAFP that provides assistance to nine family medicine residency slots, and other grants to the PA Association of Community Health Centers and the PA Office of Rural Health.  The House approved this change and the budget bill is now in the Senate. 

Buprenorphine Medically Assisted Treatment Act

PAFP opposes HB 932 would require prescribers of Buprenorphine to be licensed, pay a $10,000 licensing fee to the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, and aims to require addiction counseling and treatment whenever the medication is prescribed.  The bill rests in the House Human Services Committee and was introduced by that committee’s Chairman, Rep. Gene DiGirolamo (R-Bucks). 

Direct Primary Care Authorizing Legislation

PAFP supports legislation that specifies direct primary care agreements are not insurance and therefore not subject to insurance laws, regulations, or any other chapter of the Pennsylvania’s Insurance statutes or codes. 

Clean Indoor Air Act Expansion

PAFP has long supported a ban on indoor smoking, and supports HB 1309, which would eliminate the current exceptions to the law to include casinos, bars, and private clubs.  House Health Committee Chairman Matt Baker (R-Tioga) is the prime sponsor.  The bill was introduced 5/5/17 and is in the House Health Committee.

POLST Legislation

PAFP supports updating and revising Pennsylvania law to include codification of Pennsylvania Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST) to be used by medical professionals across all health care settings for patients who voluntarily wish to execute a POLST order.  Senator Gene Yaw (R-Lycoming) and Representative Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster) will be sponsoring the legislation.

Amending Pennsylvania’s Abortion Control Act

PAFP opposes legislation that would reduce the maximum gestational age for legal abortions from 24 to 20 weeks.  PAFP’s position is not based upon the abortion issue itself, but on the following principles:  the bills infringe upon the physician-patient relationship, it is an inappropriate penalty, it places restrictions on the practice of medicine, and it may affect access to care.  (SB 3/HB 77)



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