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PA Committees Approve Proposals to Support Health Care Workforce

June 08, 2021

Pennsylvania lawmakers today advanced proposals to modernize the commonwealth’s statutes for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) and Physician Assistants (PA), while supporting a measure that would allow nurses to work across state lines.

The House Professional Licensure Committee and the Senate Consumer Protection & Professional Licensure Committee advanced the following measures:

  • Joining the Nurse Licensure Compact:  Senate Bill 115, sponsored by Senator Lisa Boscola (D-Northampton), authorizes Pennsylvania to join 34 other states in the Nurse Licensure Compact, a multistate agreement that allows licensed nurses who meet uniform licensure requirements to practice across state lines. The measure was approved in the Senate last month and moves to the full House for consideration 
  • Formal recognition of CRNAs:  House Bill 931, sponsored by Representative Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne) and Senate Bill 416, sponsored by Senator John Gordner (R-Columbia), would officially recognize CRNAs under Pennsylvania statute. The legislation does not address scope of practice, but it recognizes the skill and expertise of Pennsylvania’s CRNAs and addresses a licensing issue related to CRNAs working in the armed forces. The measures head to their respective full chambers for consideration
  • Extend COVID-19 flexibilities for PAs:  Senate Bills 397 and 398, sponsored by Joe Pittman (R-Indiana), would extend the regulatory flexibilities for PAs that have allowed them to practice to the full extent of their training, while placing a PA on the Medical Board and Osteopathic Board with a permanent seat. The proposals move to the full Senate for review

HAP applauds state lawmakers for advancing these important proposals that support Pennsylvania’s health care workforce. Through its Health Care Talent Task Force, HAP promotes Pennsylvania’s health care workforce and advocates for policies that help attract and retain the state’s health care talent pool.

For more information, contact Stephanie Watkins, vice president, state legislative advocacy.