The Huntingdon-based J.C. Blair Health System has officially joined Penn Highlands Healthcare. The move became official June 1st. J.C. Blair, a 71-bed, non-profit community hospital, is now known as Penn Highlands Huntingdon, making it the fifth hospital in the Penn Highlands Healthcare system. The boards of directors of both Penn Highlands and J.C. Blair signed a letter of intent in October that paved the way for the affiliation. A definitive agreement was signed following recent regulatory reviews and approval.
The Kroger Co. is recalling 16-ounce and 48-ounce sizes of Private Selection Frozen Triple Berry Medley, and 16-ounce Private Selection Frozen Blackberries manufactured by Townsend Farms due to possible Hepatitis A contamination. Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease that results from exposure to the Hepatitis A virus, including from food. Kroger has removed the potentially affected items from store shelves. Customers who have purchased the products should not consume them. Return them to a store for a full refund or replacement. Customers who have questions should call 1-800-KROGERS. Locally, Kroger operates stores in Camp Hill, Harrisburg, and Altoona.
Pennsylvanians who buy their health insurance on the federal exchange can expect lower prices if a bill passed by the State House yesterday becomes law. House Bill 3, sponsored by House Majority Leader Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster), would establish a state-based health insurance exchange and reinsurance program. The Trump administration opened additional opportunities for states to create exchanges unique to the challenges and needs facing individual states through an executive order. The cost-saving plan is also endorsed by Governor Tom Wolf. The state exchange makes no changes to the requirements, pre-existing conditions or any other enrollment requirements that exist at the federal level. The state reinsurance program would drive down costs for all Pennsylvanians. The return in other states has proven to be lower premiums for all customers. Currently, more than 400,000 Pennsylvanians buy their health insurance through healthcare.gov at a cost of $85 million to $90 million to the state in fees to run the site. Under this plan, those fees would be kept in Pennsylvania and the state Insurance Department would run the exchange. The bill now advances to the Senate for further consideration.