Senate Approves Bill to Protect Pennsylvanians’ Access to Pharmacy Services

HARRISBURG – Legislation to address concerns about pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), provide relief to community pharmacies and ultimately protect Pennsylvanians’ access to medications was approved today by the state Senate, according to Sen. Joe Pittman (R-41). PBMs serve as middlemen, negotiating the terms and conditions for access to prescription drugs for hundreds of millions of Americans.

“There is no greater responsibility that we have as lawmakers than to ensure our constituents have access to quality healthcare, including pharmaceutical services,” said Pittman.

House Bill 1993 seeks to provide greater fairness and continued availability of local pharmaceutical services. The legislation increases transparency and accountability for PBMs through mandated annual reporting, expands the services pharmacists can offer by allowing them to provide immunizations to a wider range of customers, and improves network adequacy requirements.

“This was a difficult, complex and complicated process, and sacrifices were made by the pharmacists, the PBMs and the insurers,” Pittman explained. “Those sacrifices were made based on the mutual recognition that the status quo could not continue because the people of Pennsylvania needed better access to pharmaceutical services.

“This is a wonderful example of what divided government can do when we work together.”

House Bill 1993 now heads to the House of Representatives for concurrence. If the House approves in the Senate’s changes, the bill will go to the Governor for his signature.

Video of Sen. Pittman’s Senate floor remarks can be viewed here.


Contact:         Kate Eckhart Flessner  

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