HAP Resource Center

Lawmaker Letter: Joint Letter, PA Congressional Delegation, Medicaid Support

April 2019

To the Pennsylvania Congressional Delegation:

Now almost three months into the 116th Congress, we are writing to thank you for your public service; identify our organizations as resources to you and your staff as you embark upon significant health care policy deliberations that undoubtedly will affect Pennsylvania; and voice our unified priority of expanding access to affordable health care coverage.

The below signed organizations represent health care providers that offer the full continuum of care to Pennsylvania patients. Collectively, our organizations are committed to improving the health of the residents of Pennsylvania.

During the past two years, the health care provider community has worked collaboratively, presenting a unified voice of common interest and mutual priority to federal policymakers. We have advocated to sustain affordable health care coverage and enhance access to that care by:

  • Strengthening Medicaid and preserving Medicaid expansion
  • Stabilizing the health insurance marketplace
  • Maintaining key resources that support care for vulnerable communities including funding for community health centers, extending rural health programs, delaying Medicaid disproportionate share hospital cuts
  • Rejecting shortsighted policies such as the “public charge” rule that could increase the number of uninsured and impact public health
  • Promoting the use of telehealth/telemedicine

The Medicaid program is an integral and indispensable part of the health care delivery system in Pennsylvania. During the coming months, this group will be eager to provide resources and information to supplement your understanding of how Medicaid operates in Pennsylvania and the crucial role Medicaid plays while delivering critical and necessary care to vulnerable patient populations across the commonwealth.

Medicaid in Pennsylvania

Medicaid serves as the foundation of access to care for 2.9 million Pennsylvanians, including 1.7 million adults and 1.2 million children. Nearly one in five Pennsylvanians is enrolled in Medicaid, and 72 percent are from working families. Most Medicaid enrollees are children, pregnant women, seniors, and people with disabilities. Medicaid provides coverage to:

  • Two-thirds of the commonwealth’s nursing home residents
  • One in five persons under age 65 with chronic disabilities
  • More than one-quarter of children
  • More than one-third of all babies delivered

Pennsylvania is one of the oldest states in our great country, with 18 percent of our population over the age of 65, falling behind states like Florida and Maine. Nearly 80 percent of state Medicaid spending is dedicated to covering older adults and people with disabilities.

Under Medicaid expansion, more than 700,000 Pennsylvanians gained coverage, many of whom suffer from significant chronic conditions. During a recent period, approximately a third of Medicaid expansion enrollees were diagnosed with and treated for substance use and/or mental health illnesses. With Medicaid expansion, the uninsured rate in Pennsylvania has dropped from more than 10 percent during 2010 to 5.6 percent during 2016 and down slightly to 5.5 percent during 2017—the lowest on record, and considerably lower than the national average of 8.8 percent. Medicaid in Pennsylvania also is highly cost-effective, and delivers high-quality, coordinated care.

The below signed organizations are actively working at the state level to maximize the value delivered and quality achieved through the Medicaid program for patients and providers. We are eager to provide input and context to the challenges and opportunities facing Pennsylvania within federal policy conversations.

We have attached a document that provides contact information for each of the Pennsylvania-based organizations. We look forward to serving as a source of information and a direct connection to the Pennsylvania health care providers that care for your constituents.

During the weeks ahead, we will be coordinating a briefing for your staff in Washington, D.C. to share our expertise and perspective. Equally important, we look forward to arranging opportunities to connect with you in Pennsylvania.

Thank you for your service to our state, and for your thoughtful consideration of pathways to preserve coverage, expand access to care, and promote a healthier Pennsylvania.

Sincerely,

 
Health Federation of Philadelphia
LeadingAge PA
Healthcare Council of Western Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Affiliate of American College of Nurse-Midwives
Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers
Pennsylvania Athletic Trainers Society
Pennsylvania Chiropractic Association Pennsylvania Coalition for Oral Health
Pennsylvania Coalition of Nurse Practitioners
Pennsylvania College of Emergency Physicians
Pennsylvania Dental Association
Pennsylvania Homecare Association
Pennsylvania Medical Society
Pennsylvania Optometric Association
Pennsylvania Psychiatric Society
Pennsylvania Rural Health Association
Pennsylvania Section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
Pennsylvania Society of Physician Assistants
Pennsylvania State Nurses Association
Rehabilitation and Community Providers Association
Safety-Net Association of Pennsylvania
The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania
The Urban Healthcare Coalition

Attachment

Download

Topics: Federal Advocacy, Medicaid

Revision Date: 4/1/2019

Return to Previous Page

Expired Documents



+