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Dowling’s Medical Assistance Work Requirements Bill Going to the Governor’s Desk
HARRISBURG – Rep. Matt Dowling’s (R-Fayette/Somerset) House Bill 2138, which would require work or community engagement as a condition of eligibility for Medical Assistance for able-bodied recipients, has been passed by the Pennsylvania Senate and is headed to the governor’s desk for his signature.

“The goals of this policy are to help individuals and families rise out of poverty and attain independence,” Dowling said. “This program will be critical to promoting better mental, physical and emotional health as the Medical Assistance is designed to do.”

Several exceptions, listed below, would exist to ensure that the work requirements are applied only to those who are truly able to work:

  • An enrollee who is attending high school full time.
  • An individual who is receiving temporary or permanent long-term disability benefits.
  • An individual who is under 19 years of age or those who are 65 and older.
  • Pregnant women.
  • SSI beneficiaries.
  • An individual residing in a mental health institution or correctional institution.
  • An individual experiencing a crisis, serious medical condition or temporary condition, which prohibits employment, including, but not limited to, domestic violence or a substance use disorder.
  • Those who are a primary caregiver to a dependent under 6 years of age.
  • Those who are the primary caregiver for a person who is permanently disabled or in hospice.
“We are in no way trying to take away the healthcare of those who are on Medical Assistance,” Dowling stated. “Instead, we are simply encouraging those who still have the ability to work to continue to do so.”

House Bill 2138 passed the House 115-80 and the Senate 30-19.

Representative Matthew Dowling
51st Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Abby Krueger
717.260.6617 /

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