Hundreds to Converge on Capitol to Call on Corbett to Accept Medicaid Expansion

Hundreds of advocates from “Cover the Commonwealth” plan on packing the East Wing Rotunda Monday to call on Gov. Tom Corbett to accept Medicaid expansion wholesale instead of his Healthy PA proposal.
 
“Folks are coming because there is really a frustration about that state that we haven’t expanded Medicaid yet,” said Antoinette Kraus of the Pennsylvania Health Access Network (PHAN). PHAN is expected to participate in the rally.
 
“We are 60 days past the January 1 implementation date where we could be drawing down federal funds and covering almost a half a million Pennsylvanians,” Kraus added.
 
She stated advocates also have issues with the governor’s Healthy PA proposal, contending it cuts Medicaid benefits. “We’re worried about the new limits that will be put on Medicaid beneficiaries,” she said.

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Friday, April 4, 2014/Author: The PLS Reporter
Categories: News and Views

DEMOCRATS CALL FOR TOTAL GIFT BAN

Led by Democratic Gubernatorial hopeful Katie McGinty, a group of Democrats held a news conference Wednesday to call for a total ban on gifts to legislators.

“I’m here to call for an absolute, total, no asterisk, no footnote, gift ban,” McGinty stated.

She argued the current lack of government trust among the public requires current loopholes to be closed.

“What we are proposing here is not a radical new thought,” McGinty claimed. “Pennsylvania should join the 40 other states that essentially have an absolute gift ban.”

She noted any plan should leave no question as to what’s right or what’s wrong and give the public confidence again that state government is working for them.

She said any plan should include exemptions for gifts by friends and family and be aimed toward prohibiting gifts from those who have business before the state.

“People still have their personal lives. I’m not speaking here about their personal lives,” she said.

CLICK HERE to read the full story and when action can be expected from the House and Senate.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014/Author: The PLS Reporter
Categories: News and Views
BILL REGULATING HEALTH EXCHANGE NAVIGATORS SUBJECT OF HEARING

BILL REGULATING HEALTH EXCHANGE NAVIGATORS SUBJECT OF HEARING

A bill regulating health care navigators and certified application counselors under the federal Affordable Care Act was vetted during a Wednesday hearing in the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee.

Senate Bill 1268, introduced by Sen. John Eichelberger (R-Blair), would require navigators and certified application counselors to undergo certification by the Insurance Department and submit to criminal background checks and fingerprinting.

“Federal law does not require navigators or certified application counselors to obtain a certified criminal background check even though they have access to enrollees pertinent personal information,” explained committee Chairman Don White (R-Indiana).

“This bill is drafted as a consumer protection measure,” explained Sen. Eichelberger. “When people are working to provide insurance coverage for the citizens of Pennsylvania, I believe the Pennsylvania Insurance Department should have some role in tracking them and having some oversight.”

Not everyone is so convinced such a sweeping measure is needed, however, including the Insurance Department.

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Wednesday, April 2, 2014/Author: The PLS Reporter
Categories: News and Views

PHARMACISTS RALLY AT CAPITOL

The Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association held a rally in the Main Capitol Rotunda today to highlight a number of issues they support and on which they would like to see further legislative action.

The association noted support for a prescription drug monitoring program, related good Samaritan laws, and the current drug take-back program. They also called for more regulation of pharmacy benefit managers, for fair pharmacy audit procedures, and expanded immunization opportunities.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014/Author: The PLS Reporter
Categories: Event Central
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INTIMIDATION TACTICS BILL CLEARS COMMITTEE, HEADS TO FULL SENATE

A loophole in the Pennsylvania Criminal Code allowing for violent intimidation tactics during collective bargaining negotiations is one step closer to being closed.

House Bill 1154, introduced by Rep. Ron Miller (R-York), passed the Senate Judiciary Committee today by unanimous vote. One amendment was adopted to the bill.

The bill as amended would close the loophole that allows certain harassment, stalking, and other intimidation tactics when they take place in conjunction with collective bargaining agreement negotiations. The amendment ensured that speech protected by the state and federal constitutions would remain protected under the crimes code; however, it also ensured that uses of weapons of mass destruction in such negotiations are completely illegal.

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Tuesday, April 1, 2014/Author: The PLS Reporter
Categories: News and Views
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