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Washington Update - July 2019
July 1, 2019 by Tyler Smith
  • Star Grassroots Advocates
    • In June, President-Elect Howard Straker, PhD, MPH, PA-C, traveled to Rockville, Maryland with PAEA’s Government Relations staff to meet with Assistant Secretary Elinore McCance-Katz, PhD, MD, of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This meeting was intended to bolster access to mental and behavioral health clinical training sites for PA programs through SAMHSA’s grant initiatives. Thank you for your leadership, Howard!
  • Advancing PAEA’s Advocacy Agenda
    • PAEA submitted written comments to the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee in June in support of the committee’s inclusion of a new grant program to support implicit bias training related to the provision of obstetrics care for health professions programs in its discussion draft of the Lower Health Care Costs Act.
    • PAEA endorsed H.R. 3418 - the Protecting Our Students by Terminating Graduate Rates that Add to Debt (POST GRAD Act). This bill, introduced by Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA), would once again allow PA students, among other graduate students, to access subsidized Direct Stafford loans, significantly reducing the amount repaid to the federal government in interest.
  • Health Care News in Washington
    • In June, the House Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee held a legislative hearing on the reauthorization of key primary care programs, including the National Health Service Corps, set to expire at the end of fiscal year 2019. PAEA has called on Congress to support at minimum a five-year reauthorization of the NHSC, among other expiring programs.
    • The House of Representatives passed a package of funding bills for fiscal year 2020 in June, including the bill providing funding for the Department of Health and Human Services. PAEA has expressed its strong support for this bill, which includes significant increases for the Title VII health workforce development programs.
  • Opportunities for Action
    • To help build support for H.R. 1685 and H.R. 1686, it is critical that congressional offices hear from their constituents on the impact of these bills in their districts. Please urge your representatives to cosponsor H.R. 1685 and H.R. 1686!
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