Local State Rep. Writing Bill For Communication Between Long Term Care Facilities, PA Dept. of Health

State Rep. Wendi Thomas speaks about the Family Care Act in June.

A local state legislator is drafting a bill to improve communication between long term care facilities and the PA Department of Health.

State Rep. Wendi Thomas joined Speak Your Piece to give an exclusive first look Thursday afternoon.

Thomas’ bill would create a list of medical directors at long term care facilities. Then it would require communication between these directors and the PA Department of Health during any health crisis.

Part of the impetus for this bill is the effect coronavirus has had on the elderly. In Bucks County, more than 80 percent of COVID-19 victims were residents of long term care facilities.

Thomas recently met with a local doctor who works as medical director advisor for several independent and assisted living facilities.

“In my discussions, we discovered the state does not have any registry or list of medical directors that work across the state at these long term care facilities.”

With a list, health officials would have an easy way to reach out to each of these medical directors. And it would require the health department to listen to their input.

This way, medical directors would be able to say exactly what they need and what their greatest struggles are.

Once the bill exits the drafting stage, it must pass in the state House and Senate. Then, it would require the Governor’s signature.