Rural Health Information Hub Latest News

Pennsylvania State Health Assessment Now Available

The 2023 Pennsylvania State Health Assessment update is now published and available on the Department of Health webpage. The State of Our Health: A Statewide Health Assessment of Pennsylvania identifies the populations most impaced by various health risks and outcomes and the possible causes for those disparate impacts. The assessment was developed through collection and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data with engagement of 82 organizations, including PACHC, who participate in the Healthy Pennsylvania Partnership.

Pennsylvania Governor’s Administration Launches Overdose Prevention Program

The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) and the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP) has announced a new program, building on the impact of the Naloxone for First Responders Program (NFRP). The new program—the PA Overdose Prevention Program—will serve as a “one-stop-shop” for individuals and organizations seeking multiple formulations of naloxone and related harm reduction supplies, including fentanyl and xylazine test strips. It will also serve as a clearinghouse for information, training, and technical assistance to help groups involved in harm reduction work and others on the front lines of Pennsylvania’s evolving overdose crisis. Like the NFRP, the PA Overdose Prevention Program will focus on getting naloxone and harm reduction supplies into the hands of people who use drugs and those who serve and support them. Read more about the initiative.

Medicaid and CHIP Renewals Begin: Reaching Children and Families in School-Based and Early Education and Care Settings

 As pandemic-era protections for Medicaid coverage end, the Centers for Medicaid & Medicaid Services created materials and resources to help people with Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) take steps to renew their health coverage or find other coverage options. Education and early education professionals can use this toolkit to reach parents and families about what is happening right now with Medicaid and CHIP, and community groups are encouraged to use this slide deck and talking points for outreach.

A New Toolkit Has Been Created to Support Routine Vaccination Catch-Up in School-Aged Children

Kindergarten vaccination coverage in the United States is the lowest it has been in decades, placing children and their communities at risk for preventable disease outbreaks. The Public Health Foundation, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, developed an actionable toolkit containing evidence-based strategies, tools, and resources to support and address routine vaccination catch-up. Share and review the toolkit with your education partners.

Find Out How Many Older Adults in Employer Plans Can’t Afford Care

With premiums and deductibles outpacing income growth over the past decade, employer health plans are failing to protect many older adults from health costs or ensure access to affordable care, a new Commonwealth Fund study shows. Large shares of adults ages 50 to 64 in these plans, especially people with low or moderate income, can’t afford needed care and struggle to pay their medical bills. Learn what policymakers can do to expand coverage options for people in this age group. Read more.