Magazine article Drug Topics

Another OBRA Rumbling along with Major Pharmacy Implications

Magazine article Drug Topics

Another OBRA Rumbling along with Major Pharmacy Implications

Article excerpt

Five years ago, an Omnibus Budget & Reconciliation Act profoundly changed pharmacy in America. In OBRA '90, Congress told R.Ph.s they should counsel patients and do DURs and placed a moratorium on cuts in Medicaid reimbursements, and it forced drugmakers to provide rebates. Now counseling and DURs are enshrined in state pharmacy practice acts, the moratorium has expired, and rebates have brought in more than $5 billion. And in the wings, another massive OBRA measure is hurtling down the tracks. This version, designed to bring the federal budget into balance in 2002, contains several provisions that, if eventually enacted, will also have significant implications for pharmacy.

Among them:

* Medicaid. Under the plan approved by the House Commerce committee, the existing rebate program would be retained under a Medicaid block grant. States also could negotiate additional discounts and set up formularies. The Senate is considering a sunset provision that would end rebates in three years. …

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