Inside This Issue - News
NACDS makes splash in nationís capital
April 7th, 2014
WASHINGTON – More than 400 pharmacists, industry executives, students and other pharmacy advocates from 40 states attended the sixth annual NACDS RxImpact Day on Capitol Hill.
Meetings were conducted with more than 80% of the members of the House and Senate — including 136 of 139 lawmakers serving on committees with jurisdiction on health care issues — as well as Obama administration officials.
The event, held last month, brought pro-patient, pro-pharmacy issues to the fore, says National Association of Chain Drug Stores president and chief executive officer Steve Anderson.
“Extremely valued by those in greatest need, pharmacies help patients use medicines safely and stay healthy, and provide innovative pharmacy services to improve patient health and quality of life, also helping to improve health care affordability.”
Rep. Fred Upton (R., Mich.) spoke at a breakfast briefing and received the NACDS Congressional Leadership Award for his commitment to community pharmacy. Upton is chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which oversees key pharmacy issues.
The day coincided with the introduction of H.R. 4190, a bill that would amend the Social Security Act to designate pharmacists as health care providers under Medicare.
Under the bill, pharmacists would work to their full capability by providing underserved Medicare patients with services not currently available to them — including immunizations, diabetes screenings and self-management education, cardiovascular screenings, and behavioral therapy — within the scope of state laws.
“It is timely that this commonsense, bipartisan legislation was introduced the week of our annual grassroots advocacy fly-in,” says Anderson. “Retail pharmacies are oftentimes the most readily accessible health care provider. Research has shown that nearly all Americans (89%) live within five miles of a community retail pharmacy. Combined with their expertise and training, pharmacists as health care providers can serve their patients to their full capabilities.”
“Pharmacy has an important part to play — working collaboratively with other health care professionals and providers — in providing patient care for those in need.”