PA-ACP-Supported Bill Helps Ensure Access to Nursing Homes with Ventilator, Tracheostomy Care

PA-ACP supported passage of SB 108, sponsored by Sens. Camera Bartolotta (R, Washington) and Dan Laughlin (R, Erie), recognizing the need for expanded access to ventilator and tracheostomy care in the state’s skilled nursing facilities.

Governor Wolf signed the legislation June 30, and Act 56 will now help preserve health care access in PA's nursing facilities.  The bill dedicates additional Medicaid funding to nonpublic and county facilities serving a substantial number of patients who require ventilator or tracheostomy care.  The law will ensure the distribution of these payments under the fee-for-service and the managed long-term services and supports programs.

Ventilators were in high demand even before the COVID-19 pandemic, but health care providers quickly began to rely on them as the pandemic reached Pennsylvania.  This legislation is long overdue and supports the providers that are serving our most vulnerable young adults with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis and other debilitating diseases.

Hopefully, this law will not only help support the facilities serving significant numbers of patients now, but also provide an incentive for more providers to offer these services.