HAP Resource Center

Advocacy Correspondence: HAP Support Memo, Interstate Licensure Compact Bills—Senate Bill 655, House Bill 862, House Bill 2584

September 4, 2020

TO:  Members of the Pennsylvania House Professional Licensure Committee

FROM:  Stephanie Watkins, Vice President, State Legislative Advocacy

SUBJECT:  Support Interstate Licensure Compact Bills—Senate Bill 655, House Bill 862, House Bill 2584

The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania (HAP), on behalf of its members— more than 240 acute and specialty hospitals and health systems—appreciates the opportunity to provide comments on the proposed legislation authorizing the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to join the Nurse Licensure Compact (Senate Bill 655), the Physical Therapy Licensure Compact Act (House Bill 862), and the long-awaited fix to the Interstate Medical Licensure Act (House Bill 2584). HAP supports these bills and asks for your support in allowing Pennsylvania to join these progressive steps to bolster Pennsylvania’s health care workforce and ensure access to care.

In January of 2020, HAP published recommendations compiled by an industry-wide task force, “Addressing Pennsylvania’s Health Care Workforce Challenges,” highlighting the shortages hospitals and health systems are experiencing today and what should be done in the future to ensure access to quality care. Joining these licensure compacts enables Pennsylvania’s patient population to leverage the nation’s entire health care workforce and brings the commonwealth closer to meeting Pennsylvania’s workforce needs. 

The issued recommendations also include promoting and supporting efforts to integrate the use of telehealth services throughout Pennsylvania’s hospital community. The need for these services has never been more acute than during the current COVID-19 pandemic, but is equally important in times of other disasters when health care workers are called into action to provide care across state lines. 

The task force also recommended:

  • Progressive professional practice acts and regulations
  • Continued advocacy for the efficient and timely application process for licensure and re- licensure by the commonwealth’s professional licensing boards
  • Aligned governmental regulations and programs to reduce the administrative burdens on the caregivers within Pennsylvania’s health care delivery system
  • Continued efforts to promote and support patient-centered care

Similarly, Governor Wolf signed Act 112 of 2016 that granted Pennsylvania the authority to join the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC) making it easier for physicians to provide care across state lines. House Bill 2584 provides for clarification of the sharing of information raised by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) so that Pennsylvania can fully participate in the IMLC.

By passing Senate Bill 655, House Bill 862, and House Bill 2584 the commonwealth would be taking preliminary but necessary steps to address health care workforce concerns.

Thank you in advance for your support.


Topics: Regulatory Advocacy, State Advocacy, Workforce

Revision Date: 9/4/2020

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