Senate Passes Bill to Protect First Responders, National Guard Members Facing COVID-19

HARRISBURG – The Senate approved a bill today that would ensure law enforcement, first responders and active duty National Guard members who contract COVID-19 can still receive compensation while quarantined or receiving treatment for the virus, according to Senator Yudichak, who supported the bill.

House Bill 1869 would allow first responders who are diagnosed with COVID-19 or subject to quarantine resulting from exposure to the virus to receive disability benefits in accordance with the Enforcement Officer Disability Benefits Law, more commonly known as the “Heart & Lung Act.” The bill also ensures active duty National Guard members affected by COVID-19 would still continue to receive their average weekly wage.

Coverage would also be included for all medical and hospital expenses resulting from COVID-19. Benefits would be limited to no more than 60 days while the individual limits exposure to others and recovers from the virus.

The legislation would also allow EMS to request waivers for staffing requirements due to a shortage of available staff.

CONTACT: Brad Hurley (bhurley@pasen.gov)

Carly Simpson (csimpson@pasen.gov)