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Pennsylvania Governor Rendell Ceremonially Signs Four Health Care Bills That Will Reduce Costs, Improve Access and Quality
Date:7/1/2009

egal for health care providers to charge when they've made a serious, preventable medical mistake. That will send a clear signal to providers that they must implement systems to make sure avoidable mistakes do not happen. Can you imagine any other business that charges you to fix a mistake that it has made? And we will continue to benefit from the groundbreaking work started 23 years ago by the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council, the nation's premier health care data collection and reporting agency."

The Governor signed the following bills:

Senate Bill 189: This bill was part of the Governor's Rx for PA and will allow uninsured, single, adult children up to age 30 to be covered by their parents' health insurance plan. Parents must pay the premiums and the coverage hinges on the employers' willingness to offer the benefit to parents. This bill will go into effect in six months and coverage will be available on a rolling basis after that as contracts are renewed.

According to a 2008 survey by the Insurance Department, there are 383,298 uninsured Pennsylvanians between ages 19-29, which accounts for 40 percent of the total uninsured population. While not all of these Pennsylvanians would be able to be covered by a parent's policy, estimates are that this bill will increase access to health care for approximately 15,000 young adults.

The Senate bill was sponsored by Sen. Jake Corman (R) and the HB 838 which mirrored it was sponsored by Rep. Mark Longietti (D).

House Bill 84: Also part of Rx for PA, this bill prohibits health care providers from seeking reimbursement for a serious, preventable medical error, often called "never events."

Approximately 140 patients who experience an adverse medical event that might be both serious and preventable die each year in Pennsylvania hospitals. The total charges for the hospital stays in which these
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SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor
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