The NCPA urges pharmacists to send an electronic message to Governor Kathy Hochul to sign 3 pro-pharmacy bills that are currently waiting her signature.
The NCPA released a statement this past week urging New York-based pharmacists to sign a letter to New York Governor Kathy Hochul in support of 3 pro-pharmacy and pro-patient bills aimed to counteract harmful practices led by pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and managed care providers that limit transparency and stifle patients and providers.1-4
Senate Bill S6603 protects access to pharmacy services for patients. This bill aims to enact public health law to reform PBM practices such as health plans and other insurers creating barriers for patients to choose how they can receive medications from their pharmacies. This bill was introduced by Senator James Skoufis and is supported by the NCPA, who has signed letters in support.
“It is important that taxpayer-funded programs be transparent, and this legislation would bring transparency and fairness to pharmacy reimbursements in Medicaid managed care,” the NCPA wrote in their letter of support in May.
The letter, written by Anne Cassity, JD, vice president, federal and state government affairs at the NCPA, cites a report finding that “PBMs often employ controversial utilization and management tools to generate revenue for themselves in a way that is detrimental to health plan sponsors, patients, and pharmacies.”
The bills awaiting signature would additionally protect patient access to vital care and services. If passed, S6603 would further ensure reimbursement to retail pharmacists for Medicaid plans in an amount equal to the fee-for-service rate.
The bill is currently awaiting review by Governor Hochul and has passed through assembly and the state Senate. Therefore, the NCPA urges New York pharmacists to send a message to the governor through an e-message or phone.
Overall, retail pharmacists would gain the ability to take part in various provider networks under the medical assistance program if enacted and PBMs would be regulated from stifling patients from receiving medications from non-mail order pharmacies.
Senate bill S3762 would allow for pharmacy benefit management and the purchasing of prescription drugs to be dispensed to patients to increase transparency about medications.
“The administration or management of prescription drug benefits; sets forth definitions; provides for funds received by a pharmacy in trust for the health plan or provider and provides for accountability of such funds; further provides for an appeals process to investigate and resolve disputes regarding multi-source generic drug pricing,” stated the text of the bill, focusing on accountability to said middle-managers and drug transparency.
Finally, Senate Bill S3566 relates to the purchase of prescription drugs by pharmacies and establishes equal reimbursement to all pharmacies.
These bills are cosponsored by Gustavo Rivera (D), Leroy Comrie (D) Joseph Addabbo Jr (D), and James Gaughran (D), Fred Akshar (R), and Andrew Gounardes (D).1-4
“We urge all pharmacists and patients in New York to contact Hochul and tell her to sign the pharmacy rescue package now,” the NCPA wrote. Sign an electronic letter here.