Bipartisan Support Grows for Provider Status Bill

By: | Jul-10-14

<p style="margin-left: 0in;">Converging factors in healthcare make the case even more compelling for pharmacists to play a broader role in optimizing patient care and reducing healthcare expenses. The numbers are stark yet opportunity-rich: medication non-adherence costs the U.S. $300 billion annually, chronic diseases account for $2.6 trillion in healthcare costs and nearly 30 million more Americans are eligible for health insurance.</p>
<p style="margin-left: 0in;">At this critical juncture of healthcare needs and stretched resources, utilizing the abilities of trained healthcare providers like pharmacists makes sense&mdash;and Congress is on board. This week, Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) and Rush Holt (D-NJ) lent their support to NACDS-backed bipartisan legislation that would designate pharmacists as healthcare providers under the Medicare program, bringing the total number of cosponsors to 65.</p>
<p style="margin-left: 0in;">When the legislation was introduced in March of this year, NACDS President &amp; CEO Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE, said, &ldquo;Expanding the role of pharmacists to meet the demands of more than 30 million newly uninsured patients can only help alleviate the increased need for healthcare services.&rdquo;</p>
<p style="margin-left: 0in;">The legislation&mdash;H.R. 4190&mdash;is designed to enhance access to pharmacy services for Medicare patients, including immunizations, disease state testing and self-management education. The bill would amend the Social Security Act of 1935, enabling pharmacists to work to their full capabilities, within the scope of state laws.</p>
<p>In addition to advocating for support on the legislation, NACDS met last week with stakeholders to highlight the benefits of pharmacist-administered preventive services to Assistant Secretary for Health and Human Services Howard Koh, M.D., M.P.H. The group explained that pharmacy&rsquo;s accessible, cost effective services are an integral and valuable part of innovative healthcare delivery. The group plans to follow-up on their initial meeting, at Koh&rsquo;s request, with information on which states best utilize pharmacist services for healthcare delivery services. </p>
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2016-12-06T13:24:28+00:00Jul-10-14|Categories: Article|Tags: , , , , , |