ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores declared a victory for pharmacies after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) approved the Texas State Plan Amendment (SPA) to raise the pharmacy dispensing fee.
NACDS said Monday that CMS okayed an increase in the pharmacy dispensing fee from $5.14 to $7.50, effective September 1, 2007.
"We strongly commend CMS for its decision on this issue, which is good policy and vital for Medicaid patients in Texas," Steve Anderson, NACDS president and chief executive officer, said in a statement Monday.
He called the move "a huge victory for patient care in pharmacies" and noted that it came after a more than three-year push by NACDS and its state partners to boost the fee.
"NACDS emphasizes that there are two types of costs in providing prescriptions: the costs of the medications themselves, and the diverse and substantial costs of dispensing them," Anderson explained. "Inadequate dispensing fees contribute to pharmacies providing medications to Medicaid patients at a loss, which impact their ability to serve the most vulnerable patients."
With the victory, Anderson gave kudos to the Texas Federation of Drug Stores, Texas Pharmacy Association and the Texas Pharmacy Business Council. He also thanked Texas Gov. Rick Perry and state Health and Human Services commissioner Tom Suehs for their support as well as U.S. Reps. Gene Green (D., Texas), Joe Barton (R., Texas), Ralph Hall (R., Texas) and Lloyd Doggett (D., Texas) for urging CMS to approve the increased dispensing fee.