3/29/2019 Missouri Pharmacy Association Legislative Day Speech
FLORIDA STATE BOARD OF PHARMACY 2/2019
Please watch and share. This is the recording from the State Board of Pharmacy meeting in Florida. I have also left a similar public comment to the Missouri State Board of Pharmacy.
I plan on traveling to every State Board of Pharmacy across the nation and letting them know that we demand that they protect us. I also plan on speaking to every regulator to let them know that they are failing to ensure that patients have the safest options to receive medications which is through the hands of their trusted pharmacist.
I am not 100% against mail-order pharmacy, but no one should be forced as there are many risks. Mail-order could be an option but never forced or heavily incentivized.
Just a few of the issues with mail-order pharmacy
-Life-threatening delays-Lack of temperature monitoring -No face to face consultations for our elderly and people chronic conditions -Stolen Medications -Lost Medications -Medications improperly stored as most medications are shipped in only a bag -Miscommunication -Medications can be damaged -Mailman cannot do consultations -Different pharmacist each time we call the mail-order pharmacy vs seeing the same pharmacist who knows us. -When we spend our money in local communities, more money comes back to the local community. -Children and pets can get the medications left on porches and doorsteps & the list goes on of over 100 issues.
I cannot do this without you. This issue will not be resolved because of me. This will happen because we united and drew the line and demanded the safest access and improved pharmaceutical care.
I absolutely appreciate each and every supporter more than words can ever say. To the patients and caregivers, I will fight with all I have to protect us. Feel free to connect with 2-3 people who share issues and concerns and take them to your legislatures.
Please share your story or concerns.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT! I COULDN’T DO THIS WITHOUT OUR SUPPORTERS!
1/7/2019 NPR’s Investigation Finds “Extreme Temperatures May Pose Risks To Some Mail-Order Meds”
A hero reported on one of the mail-order pharmacy issues.
Alex is a brilliant reporter and investigator. He didn’t fall into the trap of them saying they keep a close eye on medications. He quickly uncovered that this “close eye” only applies to the small percentage of refrigerated medications. It did not at all apply to room temperature medications, like children's room temperature liquid oral medications (Smith,2018)
Also, supporters are thankful to Stephen Eckels University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill who wasn’t afraid to speak the truth. Yes, medications could get damaged in the extreme temperatures. He went on to say that “A lot of people enjoy the convenience of mail order, but there are some risks they’ve got to understand," and "it’s possible that drugs in oral suspension form, like the ones Wesley was taking, could be damaged by exposure to extreme heat or cold (Smith,2018).”
In keeping his reporting neutral, he interviewed Adam Fein, a longtime PAID CONSULTANT of the Insurance’s PBM (pharmacy benefit managers) that forces patients to their mail-order pharmacy. The pharmacy benefit managers are the ones often only allowing us to use their OWNED mail order pharmacy for specialty medications. Many independent pharmacists warned that he strongly supports the large corporate pharmacy benefit managers and not the smaller independent pharmacies.
An example of Adam Fein's support of PBMs: Google searching “CVS PBM” along with the word Ohio, Pennsylvania, Connecticut or Arkansas, will reveal that CVS’s PBM is being investigated in many states due to their practices of overcharging states millions of our tax dollars in Medicare programs.
Instead of noting this practice was unethical, Adam Fein stated, "It's up to the state Medicaid program to manage the program appropriately," Fein said. "If they allow the PBMs to be overcompensated, it's hard to blame the PBMs for accepting the extra compensation (Dunn, 2018)."
What happened to integrity or doing what is right even when people are not watching?
Taxpayers, our government, and all patients should be able to trust people to what is right. Obviously overcharging millions of dollars in taxpayer money in a program that is supposed to help our people with disabilities and America’s elderly is not an ethical practice. How much lower could the cost of elderly patient’s coverage have been without this price gouging? With Medicare, most have paid into taxes their entire lives to be able to receive this coverage.
Therefore, Adam Fein’s comments that belittled our concerns was not surprising. He went on to say that adding additional temperature monitoring would "do little more than increase costs" for mail order pharmacies (Smith,2018). Adam Fein lacked any empathy for the mothers who are only able to get their children's medications from a hot and extreme freezing cold truck without any protection. The trucks are known to reach up to 170 degrees as they are not temperature controlled. Never would I put the medications that my son's life depends on in a vehicle this hot. In our coverage, we shouldn't be forced to. One person having to take these risks, because it is the only option of coverage is unacceptable.
Additionally, this increased cost wouldn’t even be necessary just like all the other unnecessary cost and risks that come along with mail order pharmacy if allowed coverage and options to receive medications the safest way in the first place which is through the hands of OUR pharmacy at which it is filled.
Please note, many of the medications that PBMs are taking away and moving to their OWNED pharmacy from our SPECIALTY PHARMACIES/pharmacies are medications that our trusted pharmacies are more than familiar and qualified to handle. The pharmacy that we use, a children's hospital pharmacy, works mostly with children and often fills the medications of cancer patients, and critical life-saving medications. They work closely with my sons' doctors and physicians. There isn't a safer option to have our medications filled. Often, big corporate mail order pharmacies are taking the medications that are the most expensive to fill away from our pharmacist who serve with their hearts and don’t make us take unnecessary risks with our medications.
To the PBMs and delivery truck services (UPS, USPS, Fed Ex), Patients should always come before profits. Many petitioners and pharmacist have taught me that temperatures are just one of the many issues with mail order pharmacy. I advocate for options and choice. Insurance company’s PBMs should never be allowed to only offer coverage or deeply incentivized coverage to only their OWNED mail-order pharmacies. We should have options in our coverage.
Thank you all for your continued support.
Please share your stories and issues with mail order pharmacy with media & legislatures in your state.
If you would like for me to share them for you, please message me. You can:
Issues With Mail Order Pharmacy @justamomwholoesherson
Dunn, Catherine. “More States, Including Pa., Are Taking on Pharmacy Benefits Managers, Demanding to See the Savings in Medicaid.” Philly.com, Philly.com, 9 Nov. 2018, www.philly.com/philly/business/pharmacy-benefits-managers-trump-pbms-pennsylvania-ohio-drugmakers-20181109.html
Smith, Alex. “After Her Son Nearly Rejects Transplanted Liver, Missouri Woman Campaigns Against Mail-Order Drugs.” KCUR, 19 Dec. 2018, www.kcur.org/post/after-her-son-nearly-rejects-transplanted-liver-missouri-woman-campaigns-against-mail-order?fbclid=IwAR3QXBlxmC-tAH0XFz0NsjwPa1FfYWpo-53vUbDPhGOl92srEI-C1cuFQlg#stream/0