Fearing AMP impact, Texas to boost dispensing fees

May 7, 2007

Texas pharmacists concerned with CMS’ upcoming switch to average manufacturers price (AMP) for calculating generic drug reimbursement for Medicaid are looking to the state legislature to boost the dispensing fee.

Texas pharmacists concerned with CMS’ upcoming switch to average manufacturers price (AMP) for calculating generic drug reimbursement for Medicaid are looking to the state legislature to boost the dispensing fee. In its state budget deliberations, the Texas legislature is looking at versions that would increase the current dispensing fee of $5.14 to between $6.33 and $12.40. Still, as Jim Martin, R.Ph., executive director/CEO of the Texas Pharmacy Association, explained, adjusting dispensing fees is only a stopgap measure and would not fix the underlying problems with the way CMS is expected to calculate AMP. According to the association’s calculation, the Medicaid budget cuts mandated by the Deficit Reduction Act, including AMP, will cost Texas pharmacies $81 million per year. “In all my years as a pharmacist, I’ve never seen anything quite like this,” Martin said. “The entire healthcare system will crumble if this goes into effect and pharmacies go out of business.”

 

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