The PAO continue to advocate on behalf of our members and patients daily. This summer we are asking our member to meet with their legislators while they are on summer recess. Below are some of the important issues that the PAO is advocating for in Harrisburg:
Ensuring our elected officials understand the difference between an Ophthalmologist and Optometrist is vital to ensuring our patients receive the safest and highest quality care possible.
Current Pennsylvania law (Act 122 passed in 2020) dictates that a student is to receive a vision screening before entering school for the first time and then yearly until the 5th grade. From the 5th grade on, students receive vision screenings every other year. Only students who do not pass the screening are then required to have comprehensive eye examinations. There are two new legislative proposals (HB 562 and SB 780) that would alter this and mandate costly, unnecessary full comprehensive eye examinations for all students regardless of need. The PAO opposes these new bills as act 122 vision screenings adequately identify vision issues while this proposed new legislation adds an unnecessary burden to parents and the health care system while adding significant cost.
Over 1.5 million children are served by Medicaid in Pennsylvania. The Commonwealth currently has one of the lowest rates for patient visits in the entire country. Advocating to increase the Medicaid reimbursement rate will help to protect our patient’s ability to access quality health care.