NCPA responds to President Obama's State of the Union Address

ALEXANDRIA, Va. Following President Obama's State of the Union Address to Congress and a response from Gov. Bob McDonnell, R-Va. -- both of which discussed healthcare reform -- an organization representing the nation's independent pharmacies issued its own response, reiterating priorities to strengthen the role of pharmacists in health care.

"While the future and composition of healthcare reform this year is still an open question, both President Barack Obama and Governor Bob McDonnell reiterated in their speeches the need to find solutions that work for the American people. Community pharmacists have been engaged in this reform process from the beginning because, if properly utilized, we have been shown to help improve health outcomes and reduce costs. Whatever is decided by politicians in Washington in the coming days or weeks, community pharmacists remain eager to work constructively with both parties to find legislative remedies that improve health care in this country," said Bruce Roberts, NCPA EVP and CEO.

NCPA also emphasized concerns it hopes Congress will address in healthcare-reform bills, including:

  • Create a fair reimbursement system for Medicaid generic prescription drug reimbursement;
  • Exempt pharmacists from unnecessary accreditation requirements for the selling of medical supplies to seniors;
  • Bring transparency to certain aspects of how the costly administrators of prescription drug plans, pharmacy benefit managers, operate so that plan sponsors, patients and pharmacists can make more informed decisions; and
  • Continue to strengthen programs like medication therapy management that have already proven their benefits to patients.

"Those are the right prescriptions to ensure pharmacists are contributing to our health system in a robust and sustainable fashion," Roberts said.