NCPA Opposes Florida Shift to Narrow Medicaid Pharmacy Network, Managed Care


The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) joins with Pharmacists United for Truth and Transparency (PUTT), Florida Pharmacy Association, many patients and others in opposition to the State of Florida’s recent transition to a managed care model and to a narrow Medicaid pharmacy network that omits many Florida small business community pharmacies and ships taxpayer dollars out of the Sunshine State.

In a letter this month to Governor Rick Scott, NCPA reaffirmed its opposition and outlined better alternatives that would reduce the state’s Medicaid costs while preserving pharmacy choice and supporting Florida jobs and businesses. It comes in addition to a previous letter NCPA sent in May.

 

“NCPA is sympathetic to the plight of all states facing serious budget deficits, however managed care implementation and overly restricting a patient’s access to a pharmacy of choice in the Medicaid program is not a ‘cure all’ to this situation,” NCPA wrote.

 

NCPA’s key points from the letter include:

  • Maximizing the appropriate use of generic medications is quickest way to reduce drug benefit costs and local pharmacists can help promote their use. But the out-of-state mail order pharmacies operated by the largest pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs Express Scripts and CVS Caremark) dispense generics 18 percent less often than community pharmacies do.
  • Cutting patients off from their pharmacy of choice “decreases the critical face-to-face interaction that patients receive from their pharmacists at a community pharmacy that can have a dramatic effect on patient adherence and the proper use of their needed medication.”
  • The 1,324 independent community pharmacies in Florida are integral to the state’s economy. They employ an estimated 14,034 Floridians who, through the multiplier effect, collectively generate $9.7 billion in revenue.
  • A number of states are experiencing problems associated with their transition to Medicaid managed care. In Texas, the shift has resulted in a number of community pharmacies going out of business.  Kentucky legislators are holding hearings questioning state officials and managed care executives over how rocky its Medicaid transition has been.

 

There has been increased media attention and questions about Florida’s drastic Medicaid changes. Most recently, the concerns shared by NCPA, PUTT and others were reported in the Sarasota Herald Tribuneas well as the Bradenton Magazine.

 

For more on NCPA’s recommendations, read NCPA CEO Douglas Hoey’s recent article “Pharmacists Can Help Reduce Medicaid Costs; Urge Caution on Medicaid Managed Care,” in Drug Store News, available here.

4 Responses to “NCPA Opposes Florida Shift to Narrow Medicaid Pharmacy Network, Managed Care”


  1. 1 Namron Sivad July 20, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    and these brainiac state legislators wonder why their tax bases have shrunk?…..Duuuuh

  2. 2 dougey crook doey July 21, 2012 at 11:57 pm

    time to just sell to the chains and let them do the damm battles with pbm since indys hands are tied and bound by the crooks. Cvs caremark still funneling our patients into their stores through caremark. I dont understand why there hasnt been a class action suit. express scripts paying 25 cents dispensing fee per rx. Think about that when u kids out there want to go to pharmacy school and pay 100 grand for this glorious education that express scripts ceo George Paz says it does NOT matter who counts to 30!!!!!! David snow of medco was getting investigated for bribery so He sold medco and left with 60 million. How many indys have seen that type of money. Ncpa and 50 different organizations are too fractured to do anything. Indys built up- a Part D plan that was marketed to be independant pharmacy friendly only to be SOLD to CVS Caremark……. take a minute and think about that one. who is really looking out for you. Guess which glorious organization touted this company that was sold.???

    • 3 ncpa1 July 23, 2012 at 7:56 pm

      Certainly there are many problems with the PBM status quo and NCPA speaks out on these issues regularly. Obviously, we disagree with any suggestion that NCPA is not fully 100% committed to the success of independent community pharmacies.

      Here are just a few recent examples of those efforts:

      Regarding CCRx, NCPA did not sell CCRx because it never owned it. The original owner of the Medicare Part D prescription drug plan (PDP) was Member Health, a company based in Ohio and unaffiliated with NCPA. NCPA owned only the trademark to the name “CCRx” under which the original PDP was marketed in 2005 and began operating in 2006. NCPA received no money in subsequent sales of CCRx or Community CCRx. With all the turmoil in the marketplace and economic pressure on healthcare and pharmacy, independent pharmacy must come together in three key areas—legislation, litigation, and marketplace solutions.

      There’s a self-defeating irony in any independent pharmacist posting anonymous criticism of NCPA and others as “too fractured” to be effective. NCPA is the largest national advocate exclusively for independent community pharmacies and their patients. We welcome anyone who wants to work with us to advance that mission.

  3. 4 jb August 11, 2012 at 3:05 am

    looks like Mr roberts is at it again. hooking independents to build and get patients to join RXally and Smart d . lol What will happen when these champions of community pharmacy want to retire or a CVS caremark or express scripts some along waving a fist full of dollars. Thats it YOU guessed right… They will sell and leave YOU holding the bag wondering what happened. If you want to find out why this is a slap in the face check out the corporate leadership of this SMART insurance holding company. they are all ex employees of member health/ccrx… and now their back to hoodwink you silly pharmacy owners one more time.
    regards


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