The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) and other members of the pharmacy community participated in a meeting at White House yesterday to discuss progress in the rollout of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).


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APhA meets at White House for ACA discussion

November 27th, 2013

WASHINGTON – The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) and other members of the pharmacy community participated in a meeting at White House yesterday to discuss progress in the rollout of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

APhA said Wednesday that the meeting participants examined how pharmacists are helping with the implementation of the ACA and the health insurance exchanges.

"Pharmacists are one of the consumer's primary contacts for many health care-related issues. In addition to medication expert, pharmacists are serving a valuable role as health navigators, health care providers, triage experts and care coordinators," Michael Ghobrial, associate director of health policy for APhA, said in a statement. "With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, many pharmacists are now serving as experts in insurance plan discussions, answering questions about how long the enrollment period is, what Jan. 1 will mean, and what the ACA will actually mean to their overall coverage."

An estimated 7 million people will buy private plans via the exchanges in 2014, according to the Congressional Budget Office, and 9 million will get coverage through Medicaid. The six-month open enrollment period for the federal Health Insurance Marketplace and state insurance exchanges began on Oct. 1.

According to APhA, each group at the White House meeting discussed their actions to prepare their constituents to educate and aid consumers in selecting a health plan. They also expressed their concerns about plans that may affect theirconstituents.

"APhA is dedicated to providing our members with the education and information they need to educate the public about these exchanges and how the ACA will affect them," stated APhA executive vice president and chief executive officer Thomas Menighan. "APhA calls on all pharmacists to help patients access the Health Insurance Marketplace. Continue to offer the patient care services you offer every day. Educate the public about these exchanges and the ACA and talk with us if there are specific tools, needs or educational materials that will help you in your work with the public."

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