Dec. 16, 2019 / Newspaper Columns

By State Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne) 

The House of Representatives recently advanced the #HealthierPA legislative package which is designed to deliver affordable and accessible health care options for Pennsylvania’s families.

Several of the bills would remove barriers to treatment and better assess behavioral health and other needs.

When dealing with cancer, time is of the essence. We passed the Fair Access to Treatment Act (House Bill 427) to give Stage IV cancer patients easier access to alternative, innovative treatment options. Under current law, patients have to first fail on one FDA-approved drug consistent with best practices for Stage IV metastatic cancer treatment before another would be covered by their insurance.

To help people in need of addiction treatment, House Bill 1024 would prohibit facilities from denying treatment to an individual based solely on a negative drug test.

To better understand our capacity to address behavioral health needs, House Resolution 268 would direct the Joint State Government Commission to study the impact of behavioral health treatment needs and behavioral health care system capacity on hospital emergency departments and patient health.

Finally, House Bill 1662 would require suboxone/buprenorphine-related deaths to be included in the Medication Death and Incident Review Act so any deeper issues can be addressed, such as a pill-pushing doctor or treatment facility.

Each of these bills is pending action in the Senate. Learn more about our #HealthierPA initiative at www.pahousegop.com.


Representative Tarah Toohil
116th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact: Rep. Toohil’s Office
717.260.6136
RepToohil.com / Facebook.com/RepToohil
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