2017 WSPA Pharmacy Legislative Day
by Matt Weisser
On Monday, March 6, 2017 I had the pleasure of being able to attend The Washington State Pharmacy Association Legislative Day at the Capitol Building in Olympia, WA. The meeting included Pharmacists from across Washington State and featured Pharmacy students from Washington State University College of Pharmacy. The goal of the meeting was to educate Washington State Legislators on pending legislation that directly or will indirectly impact pharmacy practice. The following is a timeline and summary of the event.
8:30-10:00am: Arrived in Olympia, WA at the Ramada Inn where WSU Pharmacy Students had gathered. We discussed in detail the following legislation that will directly or indirectly affect pharmacy practice in Washington State;
Photograph by Matt Weisser
- SHB 1047 Medication Disposal System: This is an amended bill and concerns medication disposal and medication take-back program requirements in Washington state. – WSPA supports bill
- SSB 5744 Mail Order Rx Drug Coverage: This bill mandates that by January 1, 2017 regulated health insurance carriers that offer health plans that include prescription coverage must modify and contract with a PBM to include a requirement that the PBM obtain affirmative authorization, in writing or electronically, from a health plan enrollee prior to filling an enrollee’s prescription through a mail order service. Each mail order drug shipment must include a notice to the enrollee describing the acticions the enrollee can take to terminate the use of the mail order service. – WSPA supports this bill
- SB 5775 Tax Preferences Repeal: This bill concerns the Business and Occupation tax preference that is given to Pharmaceutical Wholesalers in Washington State. The legislator is considering repealing this tax preference which will undoubtedly cause increased operating costs of the Wholesalers to be passed along to pharmacies and ultimately patients. Given the McCleary State Supreme Court Decision, lawmakers are looking for additional sources of revenue to help fund K-12 education and this is one that being considered. – WSPA opposes this bill
“The goal of the meeting was to educate Washington State Legislators on pending legislation that directly or will indirectly impact pharmacy practice. ”
10:00am: Disembarked from Ramada Inn to Capitol Building in Olympia, WA.
10:45am: Convened in front of Capitol for group picture
11:30am: Met with representative Mark Hargrove (R) to educate him on the above legislation. We had a great group conversation with representative Hargrove and he seemed very receptive to the above legislation especially SB 5775.
12:30pm: Met with an aide for representative Christine Hilduff (D) to educate her on the above legislation. The aide was very receptive to issues we discussed with her and promised to brief representative Hilduff when she returned from session.
1:45pm: Met with an aide for Senator Steve Oban (R) to educate him on the above legislation. The aide was very appreciative of us coming to visit and was very familiar with the WSPA as the aide’s legislation assistant is the niece of Dedi Little, chief lobbyist for WSPA.
2:15-4:00pm: The entire group of pharmacy students and pharmacists reconvened in a room at the capitol to debrief
4:15pm: Disembarked from the Capitol