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The Berks Heim

Berks Heim - Photo from County of BerksAs many of you know, our County Commissioners are considering selling the Berks Heim or creating a non-profit to take over the facility. I know how vital the Heim is to our community, so this is an issue I’m following closely. I have received countless calls and e-mails from area residents, and they all have one message: They want the Berks Heim to remain under county control.

I can certainly understand why. The Berks Heim has a remarkable reputation in our county, and countless Berks Countians have had a loved one, friend or neighbor stay at the Heim. The facility’s dedication to providing its residents top-notch care is one of the reasons why I advocated to invest in the Heim when a similar situation arose while I served as a Commissioner.

I understand that our Commissioners are in a difficult position: They need to balance the demands for essential services with limited resource while also being good stewards of taxpayer dollars. I commend their efforts to face this issue head on.

One of the proposed solutions is state legislators raising the daily amount the county receives for each Medicaid patient, which has only increased 6.6 percent over the last 11 years. Unfortunately, this issue is far more complicated than just simply raising per diem rates. The Heim will need more funding.

Fortunately, more dollars have been coming to the Heim through Internal Government Transfers (IGT), which has increased over the last three years. In 2016, the Heim received approximately $1.28 million in IGT funds. In 2017, it received approximately $1.45 million and in 2018, $2.57 million.

This is all to say that my colleagues in Harrisburg and I know how important our constituents consider the Heim as a county controlled facility. We’re still working on finding ways to increase support for our county-owned and other nursing facilities. While we do this, there still may be a need to invest more local dollars to support the Heim, which is something Allegheny County is doing.

I think many of you would join me in supporting that decision if our Commissioners decide they need to make that investment. 

If you have any comments you’d like to share with me please contact my office directly at 610-929-2151.

Being Social

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I really like face-to-face meetings but understand that in this busy world, sometimes that isn’t possible. Feel free to call my office to ask questions or make suggestions. Also, you may connect with me through my pages on Facebook and Twitter. Please follow me for regular updates and comments about what’s happening in the district and in Harrisburg.

Offices to Serve You

  District Office
210 George Street
Suite 201
Reading, PA 19605
Phone: (610) 929-2151
Fax: (610) 929-2576
Harrisburg Office
457 Main Capitol Building
Senate Box 203011
Harrisburg, PA 17120-3011
Phone: (717) 787-8925
Fax: (717) 772-0578