News Releases

Broad Support Emerges for Proposed Ban on Retroactive DIR Fees

by NCPA | Sep 26, 2016

Wholesalers, Grocers, Regional Chains and State Pharmacist Groups Back Legislation

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Sept. 26, 2016) A wide array of 99 pharmacy stakeholders recently wrote to the sponsors and original co-sponsors of S. 3308/H.R. 5951, the Improving Transparency and Accuracy in Medicare Part D Spending Act, praising their leadership for introducing these companion bills and strongly endorsing the legislative measure which would rein in retroactive direct and indirect remuneration (DIR) fees imposed by pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) in Medicare Part D.

The letter brings together a host of pharmacy providers and partners, including wholesalers, grocery stores, buying groups, regional chain pharmacies, and 40 state pharmacist associations along with independent community pharmacies and franchisees.

"Retroactive DIRs, often assessed weeks or even months after a prescription has been filled, prevent pharmacies from knowing at the time of dispensing what their true reimbursement will be for that prescription," the signatories wrote in their letter. "Such lag time creates an unnecessary burden on pharmacy operations and makes it very difficult to make decisions for the future."

The letter further highlighted that the proposed legislation strikes a balance between increasing transparency and not increasing costs: "Furthermore, it successfully achieves greater transparency without raising costs in Medicare Part D while not interfering with the ability of PBMs to create incentive-based payment models that reward pharmacies for achieving contractual-based metrics."

The signatories also cautioned that DIR fees not accounted for at point of sale have an adverse effect on Medicare beneficiaries, "...DIR fees that are not accounted for upfront inflate drug costs at the pharmacy counter, and therefore beneficiary cost sharing."

NCPA appreciates all the organizations who joined this letter and voiced their strong support for S. 3308/H.R. 5951 and echoes their call for quick Congressional passage of these companion bills.

Click here for the Senate version and here for the House version of the letter.

The following organizations were signatories:

Academy of Independent Pharmacy/Georgia Pharmacy Association

Alabama Pharmacy Association

Alaska Pharmacists Association

Alliance of Independent Pharmacies of Texas

American Pharmacists Association

American Pharmacy Cooperative, Inc.

American Pharmacy Services Corporation

American Associated Pharmacies

AmerisourceBergen

Arizona Pharmacy Association

Arkansas Pharmacists Association

Astrup Drug

Bartell Drugs

California Pharmacists Association

CARE Pharmacies Cooperative Inc.

Colorado Pharmacists Society

Compliant Pharmacy Alliance Cooperative

Connecticut Pharmacists Association

Dakota Drug, Inc

Discount Drug Mart

Federation of Pharmacy Networks

Florida Pharmacy Association

Food Marketing Institute

Fruth Pharmacy Inc.

Georgia Pharmacy Association

GeriMed, Inc.

Hartig Drug Co., Inc.

H. D. Smith

Hi-School Pharmacy Services

Hometown Pharmacies

Illinois Pharmacists Association

Independent Pharmacy Alliance

Independent Pharmacy Buying Group Inc.

Independent Pharmacy Cooperative

International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists

Iowa Pharmacy Association

Kansas Independent Pharmacy Service Corporation

Kansas Pharmacists Association

Kentucky Pharmacists Association

Keystone Pharmacy Purchasing Alliance

Kinney Drugs, Inc.

Kmart

Louisiana Independent Pharmacies Association

Louisiana Pharmacists Association

Maryland Pharmacists Association

Massachusetts Independent Pharmacists Association

Medicine Shoppe / Medicap

Michigan Pharmacists Association

Minnesota Pharmacists Association

Mississippi Independent Pharmacies Association

Missouri Pharmacy Association

Montana Pharmacy Association

Morris & Dickson Co., LLC

Mutual Wholesale Drug Co.

National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations

National Community Pharmacists Association

National Grocers Association

Nebraska Pharmacists Association

New Jersey Pharmacists Association

New Mexico Pharmacists Association

North Carolina Association of Pharmacists

ND Pharmacists Association

ND Pharmacy Service Corporation

Northeast Pharmacy Service Corporation

Ohio Pharmacists Association

Oklahoma Pharmacists Association

Oregon State Pharmacy Association

Osborn Drugs

PACE Alliance

PARD, an Association of Community Pharmacies

PBA Health

PCCA

Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association

Pharmacists Society of the State of New York

Pharmacist Society of Wisconsin

Pharmacists United for Truth and Transparency

Pharmacy Franchisees and Owners Association

PPOk

PPSC

QualityCare Pharmacies

RDC

Ritzman Pharmacy

Rx Plus

Smart-Fill

South Carolina Pharmacy Association

South Dakota Pharmacists Association

Southern Pharmacy Cooperative

Tennessee Pharmacists Association

Texas Pharmacy Association

Texas Pharmacy Business Council

Texas TrueCare Pharmacies

Third Party Station

Utah Pharmacy Association

Value Drug Company

Virginia Pharmacists Association

Washington DC Pharmacy Association

Washington State Pharmacy Association

West Virginia Pharmacists Association

Western States Pharmacy Coalition

###


The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA®) represents the interests of America's community pharmacists, including the owners of more than 22,000 independent community pharmacies. Together they represent an $81.4 billion health care marketplace and employ more than 314,000 individuals on a full or part-time basis. To learn more, go to www.ncpanet.org, visit facebook.com/commpharmacy, or follow NCPA on Twitter @Commpharmacy.