What Pending Legislation Could Have an Impact on Specialty Pharmacy?

At the 2018 National Association of Specialty Pharmacy (NASP) Annual Meeting and Educational Conference, Ron Lanton III, Esq., executive director and senior counsel for Frier Levitt Government Affairs, discussed several pieces of legislation in Congress that could impact specialty pharmacy. 


What are some helpful things in Congress right now that could affect or actually help impact specialty pharmacy? There are quite a few. I think first before we start with the answer I think it’s key to look at the legislative calendar. We’re here at September, the end of September, and we know November elections are coming up. So, basically what this means is that the things that were still percolating in Congress right now may not get carried over to the next session. The ones that don’t clear have to be reintroduced, get a new bill number, that kind of thing. But I think the things that I’m about to talk about will likely be reintroduced because they are very good issues, they have a lot of support, and hopefully they do get out before the November elections and this session ends.
The couple bills are: first Maximum Allowable Cost (MAC), there’s a bill over there right now addressing MAC transparency which is good on a federal level, because I know we’ve been helping clients fight things on a state-by-state level and trying to get some bills introduced on a state-by-state level. There’s Any Willing Provider for pharmacists and for Medicare Part D if there’s any kind of medically underserved areas. Most importantly, there’s a bill on DIR, which I know a lot of specialty pharmacies will be very interested in because that is something that’s taking a toll on profitability so that’ll be good to go away. Provider Status is a good one. Provider status for pharmacies that are actually able to be recognized for the services that they offer, the very valuable services that they offer, that will be good, so that’s definitely there. Those are a few things that I think will help specialty pharmacy, if enacted, so we just hope that politics are put aside and they do the right thing and hurry these bills through. 

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