Mandated Benefits Review - HB 1873 Executive Summary

After reviewing the staff analysis of House Bill 1873 (97-98 session), the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council does not find evidence to recommend the passage of this legislation in its current form. While we recognize that prevention-through immunization-is an effective method in combating this chronic disease, we did not find evidence to recommend acceleration of the hepatitis B immunization program as currently outlined in this bill.

Starting in August of 1997, children enrolling in school were required to receive the hepatitis B vaccine. House Bill 1873 calls for the Secretary of Health to place hepatitis B on the list of diseases that require immunization for attendance at school after August 1, 1999. This bill, then, would serve as a "catch-up" program for students in higher grades - those who enrolled in school before August of 1997 (i.e., students in 4th through 12th grades in 1999).

We note the following points: