FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
40 Georgia Patient & Physician Groups Applaud Passing
Legislation to Tighten Regulation of Pharmacy Benefit Managers
The Georgia General Assembly approved comprehensive legislation to tighten regulations
of pharmacy benefit managers and improve patient access to necessary treatments and medications.
Atlanta, GA (June 25, 2020) – 40 Georgia patient and physician groups, led by the Rx in Reach GA Coalition, today applauded the Georgia General Assembly for passing Senate Bill 313 and House Bills 946, 918, and 991 which work together to tighten regulations of pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and increase patient access to medications. PBMs are little-known middlemen who profit in the health care system by negotiating between health insurers, drug manufacturers and pharmacies, often resulting in confusing policies and higher prices for patients.
“Thanks to the efforts of Sen. Dean Burke, and Reps. David Knight, Sharon Cooper, and Matt Hatchett, Georgia patients will now have more choice in where to get their prescriptions and at a lower cost,” said Dorothy Leone-Glasser, RN, HHC, the Executive Director of Advocates for Responsible Care, which leads the Rx in Reach GA Coalition. “PBMs have complicated the prescription drug market for too long, and this legislation is an important step towards helping patients access the prescription drugs and treatments they need. We look forward to Governor Brian Kemp signing these bills into law.”
These bills will lead to improved patient access to their prescription medications while bringing some financial relief. The legislation requires that PBMs pass on savings from their negotiations to health care plans, and also requires that any copay assistance that patients receive for generic medications is applied towards the patient’s cost share or copay responsibilities.
Moreover, the bills increase patient protections by prohibiting harmful steering barriers that force patients to use out of state mail order pharmacies owned by affiliated companies to receive their vital medications. This practice limited patient choice and resulted in delays from filling prescriptions through mail-order pharmacies.
Rx in Reach GA Coalition thanks all the bill sponsors, the Georgia Pharmacy Association and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, SE Region for their determination to get vital legislation passed and putting patients first. We especially appreciate the commitment of our Rx in Reach GA partners and Patient Advocates, who called, emailed and posted on social media. Your efforts help to enable patients live their best quality of life. The patient voices were heard!
To read more about the negative impact of PBMs on patients, visit https://www.rxinreachga.org/problem.
The Rx in Reach GA Coalition includes: Advocates for Responsible Care, American Cancer Society, American Association of Diabetes Educators, American College of Physicians GA, American College of Rheumatology, Arthritis Foundation GA, Asthma & Allergy Network, Atlanta Black Nurses Association, Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, National Eczema Association, Georgia AIDS Coalition, Georgia Asthma Coalition, Georgia Society of Clinical Oncology, Georgia Bio, Georgians For A Healthy Future, Georgia State Medical Association, Hemophilia of Georgia, Georgia Academy of Family Physicians, Georgia Pain Initiative, Georgia Psychiatric Physicians Association, Georgia Society of Ophthalmology, Georgia Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, Global Healthy Living Foundation, Infectious Disease Society GA, ITSAN, LACES, Lupus Foundation of America GA , Lung Cancer Alliance, Medical Association of Georgia, Mental Health America, Metro Atlanta Rheumatology Society, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, My Style Matters, Inc., MTS Sickle Cell Foundation, NAMI Georgia, National Patient Advocate Foundation, National Psoriasis Foundation, Team Type 1 Foundation, TRAGIC and U.S. Pain Foundation.
About Rx In Reach
The Rx in Reach GA Coalition – a project of Advocates for Responsible Care – is a partnership of 40 health-centered organizations advocating for legislation that ends the financial and discriminatory barriers to securing vital medications and treatments. For more information, visit www.RxinReachGA.org.