Take Action: State Advocacy

HAP continues to advocate with state officials and lawmakers to support Pennsylvania's hospitals during this challenging time. The Pennsylvania health care community cannot fight this pandemic, nor recover from it, alone. Learn more below about how organizations and individuals can advocate to support the health care community.

The Health Care Heroes and Public Health Preparedness Act

Ask your lawmaker to support this legislation

Please contact your state house members today and urge them to cosponsor the Health Care Heroes and Public Health Preparedness (Pennsylvania Heroes) Act, sponsored by Representative Greg Rothman (R-Cumberland), which would establish a $650 million grant program for hospitals to apply for funding to support the hospital workforce, build public health infrastructure, and address the behavioral health crisis.

To ensure this legislation has broad, bipartisan support, we have a goal of 50 cosponsors for the House bill. 

To address the needs of the hospital workforce, communities, and the economy as a whole, HAP is proposing the Health Care Heroes and Public Health Preparedness Act:

  • $650 million in federal funding would be allocated to this program
  • This legislation would create defined award criteria, and the responsibility for distributing grant funding would be delegated to an appropriate administrative agency. Funds would be distributed based on demonstrated need until depleted
  • The legislation would ensure that funds could not be used to reimburse expenses or losses that have been fully reimbursed from other sources
  • Grant recipients would be required to submit applicable reports and maintain documentation, and subject to audit by the state Office of the Auditor General

HAP's 2021 COVID-19 Advocacy Priorities

  • Dedicating state and federal funding to provide financial support to hospitals 
  • Retaining administrative flexibilities and waivers 
  • Securing COVID-19 related liability protections Providing appropriate payment for COVID-19-related care
  • Ensuring hospitals have the resources they need, including PPE and testing supplies, and that equitable distribution of the vaccines occurs for Pennsylvania and for hospitals within Pennsylvania

Other Take Action Items

Establish Liability Protections During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Background: Frontline health care workers are risking their lives to care for and protect Pennsylvanians during this pandemic. During these unprecedented conditions, Pennsylvania should allow these workers to continue to treat COVID-19 patients without fear of being sued.

HAP is asking lawmakers to provide legal protections to health care workers, hospitals, and other health care facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

On May 6, 2020, Governor Wolf signed an Executive Order to provide medical liability protections for health care providers during the COVID-19 crisis. This order protects individual, licensed medical providers – including physicians, nurses, and other health care workers – from lawsuits that arrive from providing emergency services related to COVID-19. Unfortunately, this order does not extend to Pennsylvania’s hospitals.

HAP is asking lawmakers to include hospitals in these protections, to prevent frivolous lawsuits being brought against the facilities where medical personnel providing front line medical care are employed.

  • Call or email your lawmakers through Healthy Me PA to demand that they recognize the risks that hospitals are taking in the midst of the pandemic. A letter has been created for your use
  • Utilize and share the TAKE ACTION link with your health care community to contact your legislators in the General Assembly and the Governor’s Office and ask them for medical liability protections for health care workers
  • Share the graphic HAP has developed for your use on social media outlets or via email
  • Advocacy Tools:

    • Customizable Liability Protections Letter to Lawmakers
    • Protect Health Care Workers Graphic for Social Media
    • Draft letter to Governor Wolf
    • Joint letter to Governor Wolf and Members of the General Assembly
    • Joint letter to Members of the Pennsylvania Congressional Delegation

    Insurer Payment Solutions

    Background: Congress and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services made important legislative and regulatory changes to expand the Medicare accelerated/advanced payment programs, which allows hospitals and other eligible providers to request accelerated Medicare payments. This is intended to serve as a tool to help hospitals access stable cash flow.

    HAP is advocating to establish periodic payments to health care providers from commercial insurers and within the Medicaid program, similar to recent changes that were made in the Medicare program.

    HAP Contacts

    If you have questions or would like more information about HAP's state advocacy efforts, contact Warren Kampf, HAP's senior vice president, advocacy and external affairs, Stephanie Watkins, vice president, state legislative advocacy, or Sarah Lawver, director, advocacy activation. Media inquires should be directed to Rachel Moore, HAP's director, media relations.

    April 15, 2021

    DOH Extends Pause on Johnson & Johnson Vaccine

    The Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) announced it is extending the pause in the administration of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine until April 24 or until it receives an updated recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

    April 14, 2021

    CDC Declares Racism a ‘Serious Public Health Threat’

    Racism is a serious public health threat, and the COVID-19 pandemic only has amplified the need to address concerning health disparities and inequities across America, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said last week.