ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Nov. 8, 2023) – The National Community Pharmacists Association applauds the Senate Finance Committee for passage of Better Mental Health Care, Lower-Cost Drugs, and Extenders Act provisions that would require the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to define reasonable and relevant contract terms under Medicare Part D and create a process for pharmacies to report contract violations. Additional NCPA-supported provisions would give CMS the tools to enforce reasonable and relevant contract requirements and boost oversight of pharmacy benefit managers before the bill is implemented, especially regarding the upcoming DIR hangover.
This new package, when combined with the Modernizing and Ensuring PBM Accountability Act (S. 2973) that passed the committee in July, is a significant step toward achieving needed PBM reforms at the federal level, NCPA says.
“As PBM-insurers have manipulated the system to become increasingly powerful and increasingly flush with cash, pharmacy teams, pharmacies and patients have been struggling,” said Anne Cassity, NCPA senior vice president of government affairs. “For consumers, they’re dealing with increased costs and delayed access to care as a result of PBM tactics, and for independent pharmacies, it’s harder to keep the doors open. States across the country have been working to rein in the middlemen, but federal reforms are badly needed too. We’re grateful to Senate Finance for continuing their push forward. For the sake of patients and pharmacies, changes can’t come soon enough.”
Founded in 1898, the National Community Pharmacists Association is the voice for the community pharmacist, representing over 19,400 pharmacies that employ more than 230,000 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.