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PCMA: Drugstore Lobby's Bill Would Raise Prescription Drug Costs, Increase Wasteful Spending
Date:5/9/2013

WASHINGTON, May 9, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Legislation (The Medicare Prescription Drug Program Integrity and Transparency Act, S. 867) championed by the independent drugstore lobby would undermine the ability of Medicare Part D plans and pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) to detect pharmacy fraud, waste, and abuse in Medicare, the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) said today. S. 867 would limit the use of audits and other tools that uncover fraud in the pharmacy setting.  

"Policymakers want to reduce health costs for the government, but the drugstore lobby wants new laws that would increase wasteful spending on prescription drugs and make fraud, waste, and abuse harder to detect," said PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt .  

PCMA recently launched a new ad campaign that highlights how the independent drugstore lobby's agenda results in more wasteful spending and higher prescription drug costs.

Click here to view the new ad.

Fraud, waste, and abuse costs Americans up to $234 billion a year, according to the National Health Care Anti-Fraud Association (NHCAA). At independent drugstores, the owner, cashier, and book keeper are often one and the same.  These factors make independent drugstores more susceptible to irregularities and make oversight more challenging.

A report released last year by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services found that Medicare paid $5.6 billion to pharmacies with "questionable billing" practices.  The OIG report also found that independent pharmacies were eight times more likely than other pharmacies to have questionable billing practices.

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SOURCE Pharmaceutical Care Management Association
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