Alexandria, Va. - March 12, 2012
Legislation applying common sense reforms to the pharmacy audit process has been overwhelmingly approved by the Utah state legislature, a development welcomed by the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) today. On a 73-1 vote Thursday evening, lawmakers agreed to send the Pharmacy Audit Integrity and Recovery (PhAIR) Act (H.B. 76) to Utah Governor Gary Herbert.
"This legislation is an important step forward for patients and pharmacists across Utah," said NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey, RPh, MBA. "Fair auditing of pharmacies is a legitimate way to protect public and private health plans from waste, fraud and abuse. However, recently pharmacy auditing practices are sapping pharmacists' time to counsel patients and appear to be more about generating revenue for the middleman than rooting out fraud. There's no reason for community pharmacists to routinely lose time and thousands of dollars in audits when the right medication is dispensed to the right patient at the right time.
"We commend State Representative, pharmacist and NCPA member Evan Vickers, the Independent Pharmacy Cooperative and the Utah Pharmacists Association for making it happen," Hoey added. "NCPA was proud to support their grassroots efforts."
Key provisions in H.B. 76 include the following requirements:
A 2011 survey of 1,850 community pharmacists conducted by NCPA illustrates the need for the reforms embodied by H.B. 76. Among that survey's findings:
NCPA has endorsed federal pharmacy audit reform legislation, The Pharmacy Competition and Consumer Choice Act (H.R. 1971/S. 1058).
The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA®) represents the interests of America's community pharmacists, including the owners of more than 23,000 independent community pharmacies. Together they represent a $93 billion health care marketplace, dispense nearly 40% of all retail prescriptions, and employ more than 315,000 people, including 62,400 pharmacists. Independent community pharmacists are readily accessible medication experts who can help lower health care spending. They are committed to maximizing the appropriate use of lower-cost generic drugs and reducing the estimated $290 billion that is wasted annually by improper medication use. To learn more go to www.ncpanet.org or read NCPA's blog, The Dose, at http://ncpanet.wordpress.com.
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