The Pennsylvania General Assembly officially adjourned the 2013-14 legislative session on November 12, 2014. Any bills that were introduced during the 2013-14 legislative session "died" during sine die period and will need to be reintroduced when the General Assembly reconvenes for the 2015-16 legislative session in January.
View a recap of issues PPA lobbied during the course of this session below. For a printed copy of PPA's 2013-14 legislative session in review here!
Legislation Signed Into Law
Pseudoephedrine Tracking - Act 53 of 2013
Act 53 was introduced by Rep. Marguerite Quinn (R-Bucks), which adds Pennsylvania to the list of twenty-eight other states who already have real-time stop sale systems in their respective states. This legislation will protect consumers and provide pharmacists with a mechanism to promote compliance and prevent illegal sales of pseudoephedrine and related products before they happen. This bill was signed by the Governor on July 9, 2013 and Act 53 took effect in early April 2014.
Robberies of Controlled Substances - Act 131 of 2013
On December 23, 2013, Governor Corbett signed into law Act 131 which will increase the grading for the offense of burglary and robbery if the intent is to commit theft of a controlled substance or designer drug to a first degree felony and increase the grading for the offense of theft if the property stolen is a controlled substance or a designer drug to a second degree felony. Act 131 took effect on February 21, 2014.
Protecting Access to Diabetic Shoes - Act 104 of 2014
Act 104 of 2014 was signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett on July 2, 2014 and takes effect immediately. Act 104 amends Act 90 of 2012 and allows pharmacists to continue dispensing diabetic shoes, both A5512 (non-custom) and A5513 (custom) inserts, within the scope of their license.
For individuals who are not licensed pharmacists, within three years of July 2, 2014, the State Board of Medicine shall grant an individual an orthotic fitter license only if he or she has been dispensing over-the-counter prostheses, orthoses or pedorthic devices for two years prior to March 31, 2015 under the supervision of a nationally certified pedothist or be employed by an entity accredited by an accredited organization under CMS.
Drug Overdose Immunity and Naloxone Access - Act 139 of 2014
Act 139 of 2014 was signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett on September 30, 2014 and takes effect on November 30, 2014. Act 139 will provide for citizen drug overdose immunity and will permit a law enforcement agency or fire department to enter into agreements with emergency medical services agencies to obtain the drug overdose medication naloxone. It also offers immunity for its prescription by health care providers and provides for training programs.
Regulating and Reforming Physician Dispensing Within Workers' Compensation - Act 184 of 2014
Act 184 of 2014 was signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett on October 27, 2014 and takes effect December 26, 2014. Act 184 will limit physician dispensing within workers' comp. Physicians may only seek reimbursement for dispensing Schedule II and III drugs for 7 days, with an additional 15 days if the employee requires a medical procedure or surgery, all other drugs for 30 days and prohibits physician reimbursement of OTC's.
Prescription Monitoring Program - Act 191 of 2014
This law will establish a Prescription Monitoring Program, the "Achieving Better Care by Monitoring All Prescriptions Program (ABC-MAP). This will replace the current system of CII reporting to the Attorney General's office and replace it with a system requiring reporting within 72 hours after dispensing any controlled substance, Schedule II through V. It will also give pharmacists a tool for checking the history of a patient to see if there may be a patter of diversion or abuse through "doc or pharmacy shopping." Pharmacists will not be held civilly liable or disciplined by a licensing board for not checking the system prior to dispensing a controlled substance.
A board will be established to establish and oversee a system by December 26, 2014. The remainder of the bill is set to take effect June 30, 2015. PPA suspects this might take longer as there will be a system for procuring a vendor, signing the contract and getting the system ready. PPA will keep its members informed as the state begins to prepare for implementation of this system.
Establishment of a Patient Centered Medical Home Advisory Council - Act 198 of 2014
This law will establish a Patient Centered Medical Home Advisory Council to advise the Department of Human Services (formerly Public Welfare) to increase the use of this model for patients on Medical Assistance. The council shall consist of individuals representing a variety of interests, including pharmacists. Act 198 went into effect on October 31, 2014.