HARRISBURG – The House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee today approved legislation authored by Rep. Tracy Pennycuick (R-Montgomery) that would establish a 17-member Task Force on Women Veterans’ Health Care in Pennsylvania.
The task force would study prominent issues currently facing female veterans. From access to basic preventative health care such as ob/gyn services, infertility treatments and cancer screening mammograms, this task force will look at access to appropriate health care for all female veterans at all stages of adult life. Additionally, the task force will look at the availability and appropriateness of mental health treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, military sexual trauma, and alcohol and substance abuse.
“The study would need to be completed with a final report to the General Assembly and the governor by June 30, 2023,” said Pennycuick. “With this study completed, Pennsylvania could apply for additional federal funding to support women veterans’ health care services in the Commonwealth.”
Pennycuick, herself a veteran, noted that although Pennsylvania has a good veterans health care system in place already, it was created and designed with male veterans in mind.
“Women veterans often have different needs and issues when it comes to their health care. Whether it be how they process and deal with trauma and other mental health issues, they are not being adequately served under the current male-focused health care model in place,” said Pennycuick. “With more than 71,000 female veterans in the Commonwealth, we need to assess and improve health care services for them.”
The task force, as outlined in the resolution, would be comprised of four women veterans who are Commonwealth residents; representatives from the health care provider community; various state agency secretaries; and advocates with expertise in health care, mental health care and the treatment of addiction.
House Resolution 129
now goes to the full House for consideration.
Representative Tracy Pennycuick
147th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Tricia Lehman