NCPA Executive Update

NCPA Executive Update delivers insights on legislative, regulatory, policy, and industry developments from NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey, Pharmacist, MBA, to NCPA members and pharmacy leaders every Friday.

Double Play for Pharmacy in DC | NCPA Executive Update | April 28, 2017

by NCPA | Apr 27, 2017

Dear Colleague,

Doug Hoey

With a luncheon reporting session Wednesday, NCPA concluded two days of hosting nearly 100 pharmacists at our annual Steering Committee Forum. Dessert plates had been barely cleared away that afternoon when busloads of NCPA members launched the two-day Congressional Pharmacy Fly-In with the first of hundreds of visits to House and Senate offices. A busy week for NCPA and hundreds of community pharmacy activists, for sure.

For those of you not familiar with the NCPA Steering Committee Forum, it is a gathering of pharmacy owners from around the country that helps keep our fingers on the pulse of our members' needs, concerns, and suggestions. Eight committees are populated with pharmacists that this year represented 30 states. Those committees are National Legislation; State Legislation & Regulation; Compounding; Emerging Models; Long-Term Care; Management; Technology; and the Changemakers Task Force.

Some of the committees' topics were exactly as you would expect, addressing such problems as DIR fees, MAC transparency, pharmacy choice, enhanced pharmacy service networks, and onerous federal compounding requirements.

The committee members are recommended to NCPA from various sources, including state associations, buying groups, and other pharmacy allies as well as by their participation in NCPA's advocacy and program efforts. These members are willing to invest two days of their time to share their experiences and identify at least one policy initiative their committee can deliver that would benefit NCPA's membership. Likewise, NCPA invests in the committees because it enables us to better serve pharmacy owners.

The Congressional Pharmacy Fly-In Wednesday and Thursday marked the 49th consecutive year NCPA has held a legislative conference in our nation's capital. All in all, NCPA member pharmacy small business owners made more than 600 congressional office visits this week. If you were unable to join us in person, please click here to email your legislators and voice your support for a pro-patient, pro small business pharmacy agenda.

We had a press availability with Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-Va.), the lead sponsor of two of our top four legislative priorities: the DIR bill (the Improving Transparency and Accuracy in Medicare Part D Drug Spending Act, H.R. 1038/S. 413) and the patient choice measure (the Ensuring Seniors Access to Local Pharmacies Act, H.R. 1939). Also on your legislative agenda, according to our annual survey of your advocacy priorities, are MAC transparency (the Prescription Drug Price Transparency Act, H.R. 1316) and pharmacist provider status (the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act, H.R. 592 / S. 109).

NCPA members are asking their lawmakers to cosponsor the bills, if they have not already signed on. NCPA members also are discussing solid recommendations for building new, innovative models of health care delivery and medication management that leverage the extensive expertise—and accessibility—of neighborhood pharmacists to reduce emergency room visits and hospital admissions, prevent adverse drug interactions, and improve patients' medication adherence.

Independent pharmacists' personal involvement with their patients is what sets them apart, just as member involvement is key to the success of NCPA and independent community pharmacy. Many, many thanks to all those who participated this week. I hope to see most of them again and many more of you who couldn't get away to D.C. at the NCPA Annual Convention, Oct. 14—18 in Orlando. Take advantage of the premier registration discount and meet ZDoggMD, AKA Zubin Damania, MD, a practicing internist and unlikely YouTube music/satire phenomenon intent on revolutionizing health care who will be a keynote speaker.

Doug Hoey