Florida Lawmaker Fights to Improve Access to Prescription Drugs, Lower Costs

Florida Daily

December 19, 2019

Florida state Rep. Jackie Toledo, R-Tampa, was joined by fellow lawmakers, patients, physicians, pharmacists, and small business owners this week to announce legislation that she says would increase Floridians’ access to prescription drugs while lowering costs.

Supporters of the legislation say new legislation is needed to directly address what has been called “predatory practices” by Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs).

“Our priority is advocating for Floridians who have felt the pinch in their wallets because profit-driven policies by PBMs are robbing patients of savings that should rightly be theirs,” said Toledo. “Consumers need to know that their state lawmakers are fighting for their best interests, and our legislation will help put the power back where it belongs: with the patient.”

Proponents of Toldeo’s bill say that PBMs side-step free-market principles and force patients to use pharmacies owned by those PBMs – even if the costs are higher. PBMs have been criticized as being secretive prescription drug middlemen in a complex drug marketplace.

Industry experts tell Florida Daily that originally PBMs were established to facilitate claims processing but have become more powerful in the healthcare marketplace and use a convoluted process to reap untold hundreds of millions of dollars when consumers buy their prescription drugs.  Continue Reading

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