|The latest news from the State Capitol
Hospitals Must Alert Child Welfare about Drug-Exposed Newborns
To help ensure that babies who are born dependent on controlled substances are safely cared for and receive critical medical and developmental services, a new law closes a loophole in the reporting of such cases to proper authorities.
The legislation is designed to ensure that mothers and their babies get help rather than punish the mothers for drug use.
Act 54 of 2018 requires that child protective services develop a plan of care for the infant and puts the state in compliance with a 2003 federal law. It also clarifies how authorities should respond while focusing on providing help to the babies’ families rather than automatically treating the mothers’ drug use as a criminal act.
According to state data, more than 920 babies were born with neonatal abstinence syndrome in Pennsylvania in the first six months of 2018.
Budget Directs Funding to Lyme Disease
This year’s 2018-19 state budget addresses many of the state’s critical health needs by directing resources to several important line items, including Lyme disease.
With Pennsylvania leading the nation in the number of Lyme disease cases, $2.5 million in state funding will help combat and treat those affected by the disease.
Efforts will include building a more robust Lyme disease prevention and education program, conducting more well-rounded surveillance through activities like a statewide environmental survey, and improving participation in tick-borne disease surveillance with providers and local health departments. The funding specifically addresses many of the recommendations outlined by the Lyme Disease Task Force, which was created by Act 83 of 2014.
Other health-related funding priorities include increases to support the state’s West Nile Virus and Zika Virus control program; take care of those with intellectual disabilities; and offer evidence-based home visiting services to families affected by the opioid epidemic. Bio-technology research, ALS support services and regional cancer centers also will receive increases in this budget.
Eagle Scouts Make the Rank
Congrats to Ethan Underwood (top) on becoming Troop 198’s latest Eagle Scout!
Becoming an Eagle Scout is no easy task and these young men certainly deserves to wear their new badges with pride.
Congratulations to Stephen Slough (bottom)on reaching the rank of Eagle Scout!
Bridge Work Rescheduled
Construction work of the bridge carrying Andersontown Road (State Route 4033) over Yellow Breeches Creek, located between Fairview and Lower Allen townships at the Cumberland-York County line, has been rescheduled to begin on Monday, July 16. The bridge had been scheduled to close for construction last week as part of PennDOT's Rapid Bridge Replacement Project.
When the bridge closes for full replacement, drivers will be directed to follow a detour along Route 4022, Lewisberry Road, Siddonsburg Road, Moores Mountain Road, Route 4031, Grandview Avenue and Route 2017. Construction is anticipated to be complete in late October.
In the event of unfavorable weather or unforeseen activities, this schedule may still change.
Calling Korean War Veterans!
On Thursday, Sept. 27, Sen. Pat Toomey’s office will partner with my office to award the Korean Ambassador for Peace medals to veterans from the 92nd Legislative District.
As such, my office is asking eligible veterans to contact my office. To be eligible, a veteran must have:
To apply for the medal, go to my website, www.RepKeefer.com, to download an application by clicking on “Korean Ambassador for Peace Medal,” or come to my office, located at 12 N. Baltimore St. in Dillsburg. The applications must be completed and returned by Aug. 3
- Served in Korea at some time during the Korean War from June 25, 1950, to July 27, 1953.
- Been a member of the U.S. Navy who served a naval vessel assigned to Korean waters during the aforementioned timeframe.
- Participated in UN peacekeeping efforts in Korea until the end of 1955.