ARLINGTON, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) is recognizing the leadership of Iowa state legislators and Governor Kim Reynolds (R) for the enactment of HF 2377, an opioid omnibus bill which includes a critical mandate to require electronic prescribing for all drugs in the state of Iowa, effective January 1, 2020.
“Governor Reynolds and the leadership of the Iowa Senate and of the Iowa House of Representatives have taken decisive action on the opioid abuse epidemic by looking to electronic prescribing to help curb fraud, abuse and waste. The Iowa General Assembly’s Opioid Epidemic Evaluation Study Committee and the Iowa Board of Pharmacy deserve thanks as well for their engagement and leadership,” said NACDS president and chief executive officer Steven Anderson.
“NACDS also recognizes the Iowa Retail Federation and NACDS member companies for working hard to make the case for solutions to the opioid abuse epidemic, based on pharmacists’ experiences on the front lines of healthcare delivery.”
A poll conducted by Morning Consult and commissioned by NACDS in January 2018 found 75% of Iowa voters support a requirement that all prescriptions must be handled electronically, rather than via paper or fax, as a way to help address the opioid abuse epidemic. Reflecting a strong intensity of opinion, an impressive 44% of Iowa voters “strongly support” such a requirement – with strong support seen on a bipartisan basis and across political ideologies.
The legislation is consistent with an array of public policy recommendations announced by NACDS, and with NACDS’ comments to the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis. NACDS advocates for recommendations based on pharmacists’ experience on the front lines of healthcare, and based on pharmacy’s longstanding collaboration with law enforcement and health professionals on the complex issue of opioid-abuse prevention. The public policy recommendations complement pharmacy’s existing and extensive work, including: compliance programs; pioneering e-prescribing; drug disposal; patient education; security initiatives; fostering naloxone access; stopping illegal online drug-sellers and rogue clinics; and more.
At the federal level, NACDS has endorsed the Every Prescription Conveyed Securely Act (H.R. 3528 and S. 2460). The bill would require that Schedule II through V controlled substances for Medicare Part D beneficiaries are prescribed electronically.
“Together, federal and state actions will enhance the use of e-prescribing to help reduce fraud, abuse and waste of controlled substances. NACDS salutes Iowa’s leadership in this regard,” Anderson said.