McMorris Sends Letter to Support Eastern Washington’s Independent Pharmacies

Dec 31, 2008
Health Care

(Washington, D.C.)  Congresswoman Cathy McMorris (WA-05), along with 22 members of Congress, sent a letter to House Budget Committee Chairman Jim Nussle and House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Joe Barton that outlines a series of recommendations to the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 that will help our region’s independent pharmacies.

“One of my top priorities is to provide access to quality, affordable health care, especially in the rural areas of Eastern Washington,” said McMorris. “I have heard from independent pharmacies from across Eastern Washington that they are concerned specifically with how some of the changes in the Deficit Reduction Act may impact their business. I share their concerns and want to make sure the prescription drug reimbursement proposal does not disproportionately affect our region’s community and independent pharmacies and hurt their ability to serve our rural communities.”

The recommendations made in the letter include:

  • Using the House version of the Retail Average Manufacture Price (RAMP) to ensure that small pharmacies are not negatively impacted by the inclusion of volume discounts, chargeback, or rebates.
  • Requiring monthly updates of RAMP
  • Creating Critical Access Pharmacies to allow pharmacies that are 20 miles away from another pharmacy to be reimbursed under different payment methods
  • Requiring the Government Accountability Office report to be completed before RAMP goes into effect.
  • Supporting language set a minimum $8 dispensing free for brand name drugs and $12 for generic.

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