NCAP has introduced legislation designed to modernize our existing collaborative practice authority. The proposed changes are in alignment with Collaborative Practice Model Language put forth by the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations. Each of the proposed changes are designed to provide greater flexibility and to more easily facilitate collaborative care with physicians and pharmacists in all practice settings.
Pharmacy Benefits Manager
North Carolina Pharmacy Benefits Manager Licensure Act was filed in the NC House (H.B. 534) and Senate (S.B. 632) in 2019. This bill calls for PBMs to be licensed to operate within our state, so that the Department of Insurance and the State Insurance Commissioner can hold PBMs accountable to abiding by our laws. The intent of the bill is to create greater accountability, transparency and to strengthen existing consumer and pharmacy protections, including additional any willing provider, claims processing and audit language. The bill is a complex bill but meant to be as comprehensive as allowed by the law to help us address many of the unfair business tactics used by PBMs.
As the NC Department of Health and Human Services, and the NC General Assembly have worked to meet needs generated by the COVID-19 pandemic, NCAP has been actively participating in discussions, plans, and proposed legislation for better facilitating the role of pharmacists in helping our citizens receive quality care while our state works to gain normal operations again.
An important part of NCAP's advocacy agenda is working towards payment parity for pharmacists who provide direct patient care services. To date three states have gain mandatory payment parity for pharmacists: Washington, Tennessee and Texas. Typically states have to legislate provider status recognition before running legislation for payment parity. NC has two older general statutes on record that refer to pharmacists as 'healthcare providers'; therefore, NCAP plans to work on pay parity legislation in the 2021 long session.