Official Newsjournal of the Illinois Council of Health-System Pharmacists
by Jim Owen and Scott Meyers
Late August and early September saw a plethora of bill signings by Governor Rauner. Here’s a summary of the few bills that were pharmacy related:
HB3462 – Now Public Act 100-0497 This is the big one, the revision/extension of the Pharmacy Practice Act. In addition to making many technical changes to bring the practice act in line with current practice, the bill creates the Collaborative Pharmaceutical Task Force, which will work on revising and updating the practice act over the next 12-18 months. The Task Force will consider workload issues along with e-prescribing as two important areas but will review the entire act to enhance its effectiveness. Effective Immediately.
HB313 – Now Public Act 100-0513 is a renewal of the Nurse Practice Act. The critical piece in this newly revised act is that after 4000 hours of clinical practice under a collaborative agreement with a physician, an Advanced Practice Nurse (APN) can apply to become an independent practitioner, no longer needing a collaborative agreement. This could create some interesting scenarios on the community pharmacy side. Effective January 1, 2018.
HB2531 – Now Public Act 100-0065 removes the requirement of generic pharmaceutical manufacturers to provide equivalency data to the Illinois Department of Public Health for the drug formulary. The drug formulary has not existed for several years as Illinois now defers to the FDA Orange Book. Effective Immediately.
HB2957 – Now Public Act 100-0138 This bill allows for synchronization of prescription refills and requires insurance providers to pay for the partial filling. It creates a pro-rated copay for the patient and requires the insurance provider to pay a full dispensing fee to the pharmacy. Effective Immediately.
SB1790 – Now Public Act 100-0237 allows pharmacies to provide a 30-day supply of an expired prescription (not including controlled substances) if the prescribing physician has abruptly retired or died. This gives the patient a chance to line up a new physician and not interrupt medication therapy. Effective Immediately.
SB1944 – Now Public Act 100-0326 revises the Hypodermic Syringes and Needles Act to now allows pharmacies to sell up to 100 needles and syringes without a prescription rather than the previous 20. This will provide patients with more options when insurance doesn’t cover the purchase of needles and syringes. Effective January 1, 2018.
These were the big bills this past legislative session. While there is no evidence that any significant pharmacy-related legislation will be introduced or acted upon during the fall veto session, we will be monitoring it closely. More importantly, we will continue to update you on the progress and discussions of the Collaborative Pharmaceutical Task Force and the potential revisions to the practice act as they occur.
Take the time this fall to visit with your local legislators and let them know that you’re available to assist them on any health care related issue they may have. Most importantly, get to know them before you have to ask them for a favor in the future!