ISSUE 169 | August 10, 2022
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From Around the Region and the State
Economic and Policy News
PA’s retirement dilemma could cost taxpayers
About 10 percent of PA’s full-time private sector workers do not have retirement plans – a deficit which could increase public assistance costs while reducing personal income and spending capacity.

By 2030, Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties’ vulnerable older households could average annual income shortfalls of $4,850 and $4,680 respectively.

The bipartisan Keystone Saves Act could help private-sector workers save money while minimizing the potential fiscal shock on the state.

Addiction medications strengthen treatment and save lives
Medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, is an evidence-based approach that combines approved medications with counseling and behavioral health therapies.

A Department of Justice investigation found that Northumberland and Jefferson County courts forced people under mandated supervision to quit using doctor-prescribed buprenorphine or risk incarceration, which investigators say is a violation of their civil rights.

In response, experts advocate programs such as a pilot underway in Pittsburgh, where Emergency Medical Service (EMS) providers administer buprenorphine to patients with opioid use disorder. 

Opioid use stigma prevalent in health care 
Recent research reveals that, among key health professional groups such as primary care physicians, there are high levels of stigma toward people with opioid use disorder(OUD).

This stigma may manifest in both the lack of relevant education in medical school curricula and the development of punitive policies targeting people with OUD.

OUD deaths have increased dramatically, year over year, in cities such as Philadelphia.

From Around the Nation and the Globe
Economic and Policy News
Healthcare Anchor Network explores housing as social determinant of health  
Five pilot programs are currently underway to examine how healthcare systems may help alleviate homelessness in their communities.

The pilots embrace five pillars – commitment, governance, housing placement, financing, and inflow.

The business case for the hospitals pertains to reduced emergency room visits. 

Two-generation model helps parents and improves education outcomes 
School districts serving high margins of students of color or students whose families receive low incomes are awarded $23 billion less than other schools.

Capital Impact Partners, a community development financial institution (CDFI), supports programs for early childhood education, charter schools, and workforce education.

Its multi-prong approach allows for education and training of parents, along with on-site federally-qualified medical, dental, behavioral health, and social service care.  

More education about tech opportunities and high wages is needed 
Higher education is not the right fit for everyone, and not all jobs – even lucrative ones – require four-year degrees.

Nonetheless, there is a shortage of technical education graduates to meet workforce needs.

Technical education and career opportunities should be discussed with students beginning in middle school, and parent education must occur concurrently.

Research Spotlight: The Institute's Education and Workforce Development Task Force has examined the importance of the trades in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Read about in-demand building, mechanical, technology, and medical trades. 

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