Leading into its 2013 Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., this week, the National Community Pharmacists Association is running ads to underscore the value of community pharmacies.


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NCPA ads highlight value of community pharmacies

May 6th, 2013

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Leading into its 2013 Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., this week, the National Community Pharmacists Association is running ads to underscore the value of community pharmacies.

NCPA said Monday that the prints ads, appearing in key publications such as the congressional journal The Hill, reinforce community pharmacists' policy priorities for 2013.

One ad depicts the value that community pharmacists provide to patients and the nation's health care system. Headlined "Independent Community Pharmacies: Providing neighborhood patient care. Achieving better health," the print ad conveys the high levels of service and quality of care that community pharmacists provide as well as the high degree of trust and satisfaction that patients have with pharmacists, as documented in surveys by Gallup and Consumer Reports, among others. In addition, the ad points out that independent pharmacies are key to underserved rural and inner-city locations where often no other pharmacy provider is accessible.

The NCPA ad concludes by noting how community pharmacists can help reduce overall health care costs. For example, the association said, they help promote proper use of lower-priced generic drugs, and a recent survey of millions of Medicare prescription drug event data found that community pharmacies provide 90-day supplies of medications at lower overall cost than mail order and do a better job substituting generics.

Another print ad, headlined "Independent Community Pharmacies: Better Health. Lower Costs," pictures a U.S. map indicating the number of independent pharmacies in each state, showing that community pharmacies are an important presence and source of accessible, personalized health care and jobs, according to NCPA.

"Help your trusted, hometown pharmacists do their job," the ad reads. "Independent community pharmacists provide face-to-face counseling — no appointment necessary — to promote proper medication use. That means better health outcomes and lower overall health costs."

The ad also lists some top NCPA legislative priorities, including commonsense standards for pharmacy audits; requiring generic drug reimbursement rates to be updated promptly to reflect price spikes; expanding medication therapy management (MTM) through bills in the Senate and House (S. 557 and H.R. 1024, respectively); and safeguarding patient access to customized medications through pharmacy compounding.

Also, the ad calls for the preservation of pharmacy choice for seniors. "Address the concerns of Medicare, MedPAC and 30+ members of Congress by allowing any willing pharmacy provider to participate in 'preferred pharmacy' Medicare drug plans, which often force seniors to travel 20+ miles to obtain their prescription drugs," the ad reads.

For the NCPA Legislative Conference, which runs May 7 and 8, more than 250 independent pharmacists are slated to come to Capitol Hill to meet with hundreds of members of Congress, including senators and representatives.

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