ALEXANDRIA, Va. (April 28, 2023) – On April 26 and 27, hundreds of independent community pharmacists came to Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., to participate in the National Community Pharmacists Association’s Congressional Pharmacy Fly-In. This was NCPA’s first in-person fly-in since April 2019, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Attendees were briefed by NCPA’s advocacy and policy experts and other guest speakers and went to the congressional office buildings for meetings with legislators and their staff. They also heard remarks from Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, and Federal Trade Commissioner Alvaro Bedoya.
The purpose of the fly-in is to develop and grow relationships with those who can advance pro-patient, pro-pharmacist policies and change the prescription drug pricing model. NCPA backed up its members’ push for reforms by releasing on Thursday the results of a Morning Consult poll that demonstrates strong bipartisan support among voters for regulating the shadowy corporate middlemen who control almost everyone’s prescriptions.
Here’s a recap of NCPA’s 2023 Congressional Pharmacy Fly-In:
- The event drew hundreds of community pharmacists from 36 states and the District of Columbia.
- Community pharmacists visited more than 230 congressional offices for meetings with members of Congress or staffers; because many meetings were attended by multiple pharmacists, the effect amounts to more than 800 interactions with members of Congress or their staff.
- They advocated in favor of two bills in the House (H.R. 1613 and H.R. 1770) and two in the Senate (S. 1038 and S. 127).
- These efforts are aimed at increasing congressional support for transparency into PBM-insurers, fair and transparent Medicaid managed care pharmacy payments, clarified enforcement authority for those charged with regulating PBM business practices, and Medicare payment for enhanced pharmacist services.
“One of the most important meetings for independent community pharmacists has long been NCPA’s Congressional Pharmacy Fly-In, and I’m thrilled it was back on the calendar this year,” said NCPA President Hugh Chancy. “This year’s fly-in might well have been the most critical yet, falling as momentum is building in Congress and in the administration for investigations into and reforms of PBMs. What’s happening in Washington now comes after years of work by NCPA members and others, and we aren’t easing up. I know it and now, after such a successful event, those on Capitol Hill know it too!”
The next Congressional Pharmacy Fly-In is scheduled for April 17-18, 2024.
Founded in 1898, the National Community Pharmacists Association is the voice for the community pharmacist, representing over 19,400 pharmacies that employ nearly 240,000 individuals nationwide. Community pharmacies are rooted in the communities where they are located and are among America’s most accessible health care providers. To learn more, visit www.ncpa.org.