Printer Friendly

GOV. CASEY URGES OLDER PENNSYLVANIANS TO BACK PACE RESCUE PLAN LEGISLATION

 GOV. CASEY URGES OLDER PENNSYLVANIANS
 TO BACK PACE RESCUE PLAN LEGISLATION
 HARRISBURG, Pa., March 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Gov. Robert P. Casey today urged older Pennsylvanians to support the PACE Rescue Plan, an administration effort to preserve the solvency of the state's Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract for the Elderly (PACE) program.
 Casey told a rally of older citizens who gathered at the State Capitol in favor of the plan that they should fight for its enactment by the legislature. The plan includes a key segment to control drug costs.
 "Last year we succeeded in getting a law passed to make drugmakers treat PACE like any other large volume drug purchaser, giving us rebates," Casey said. "However, we found the law doesn't go far engislation t ha will require drug manufacturers to give PACE an additional discount whenever their prices go higher than the consumer price index, and we want that discount retroactive to last January."
 The rally was sponsored by the PACE Rescue Plan Coalition. The group includes the Pennsylvania Council on Aging, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), Action Alliance of Greater Philadelphia, the state Association of Senior Centers, the state Association of Area Agency on Aging Directors and the Pennsylvania State Council of Senior Citizens.
 The PACE Rescue Plan is a two-track effort to pump $96 million into the program -- $25 million in revenues from new games in the Pennsylvania Lottery and $71 million in savings through legislation and administrative changes.
 The plan calls for legislation that will increase the drug rebate base percentages, require rebates for drug price increases above the consumer price index and require greater use of generic drugs.
 Recalling older Pennsylvanians' efforts to help pass the Lottery Fund Preservation Act last year, Casey told the coalition to again contact legislators and ask them to pass the PACE Rescue Plan and preserve the program.
 "The members of our General Assembly need to listen to you with respect because you came to the table this year and last year and gave up some benefits in order to save others," Casey said.
 "You didn't demand more. You didn't demand that the general fund or taxes bail you out. You acted like elder statesmen and women, like a family needing to live within its means."
 Secretary of Aging Linda M. Rhodes also said the rescue plan was needed because last year's Lottery Fund Preservation Act provided inadequate protection against excessive price inflation.
 She pointed out that PACE has received $24 million in rebates this year while companies' price increases have cost the program over $27 million.
 "The drug companies keep asking for more time to prove themselves," Rhodes said. "They're now telling you that their rate of product price inflation this past year was only 7.2 percent, but what they fail to tell you is that all other manufactured products in this country had a rate of zero percent. So just what are they trying to prove?"
 The PACE Rescue Plan calls for:
 -- Requiring drug manufacturers to give PACE a 15 percent rebate on the price for brand medications and an 11 percent rebate on generics, effective July 1, 1992. Current rebates are 12.5 percent on brand medications and 10 percent on generics.
 The legislation also would make the rebates permanent. Drug rebates enacted through the Lottery Fund Preservation Act last year were only required through June 30, 1992, when the law sunsets. Projected savings for fiscal 1992-93: $26 million.
 -- Requiring drug manufacturers who raise prices higher than the consumer price index to rebate PACE an additional discount. This proposal, an incentive for drug manufacturers not to raise prices to make up for the rebate costs, is retroactive to Jan. 1, 1992. Projected savings for fiscal year 1992-93: $11 million.
 -- Allowing PACE to stop paying for the higher cost brand name drugs when an equivalent generic drug is available. If a cardholder still insists on a brand name drug when a generic is available, PACE will reimburse the pharmacist at the generic price and the cardholder will pay the difference between the generic and brand name price. Projected savings for fiscal year 1992-93: $16 million.
 The Department of Aging also will administratively establish a Prospective Therapeutic Drug Utilization Review Program (PRO-DUR) to better assist physicians and pharmacists in providing safe and effective drug therapy for PACE cardholders.
 Under the proposal, a Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee of practicing physicians and pharmacists will identify instances of inappropriate use of medications.
 Pharmacists will know at the time of dispensing whether PACE will reimburse for the medication. The new system will cut PACE costs by reducing instances of unnecessary and unsafe prescription usage.
 Projected savings for fiscal year 1992-93 amount to $18 million.
 The PACE program provides pharmaceutical medications for nearly 400,000 low-income older Pennsylvanians.
 /delval/
 -0- 3/11/92
 /Editors: H.B. 2242, the PACE Rescue Plan, is in position in the House of Representatives for vote later today./
 /CONTACT: Kate Megargee of the Department of Aging, 717-783-1549, or Spike Lukens of the Commonwealth News Bureau, 717-783-1116/ CO: Pennsylvania Governor's Office ST: Pennsylvania IN: SU:


MK -- PH015 -- 7338 03/11/92 14:17 EST
COPYRIGHT 1992 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 11, 1992
Words:854
Previous Article:ATHEY PRODUCTS CORPORATION REPORTS OVERSTATEMENTS OF INVENTORY RECORDS AT KOLMAN DIVISION
Next Article:WUESTHOFF MEMORIAL HOSPITAL (FLA.) SERIES 1992B BONDS RATED 'A-' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --
Topics:


Related Articles
GOV. CASEY CALLS FOR PASSAGE OF FAMILY LEAVE BILL
SECRETARY OF AGING PROPOSES PLAN TO CONTROL PACE PROGRAM COSTS
GOV. CASEY CALLS FOR SENATE TO PASS FAMILY/MEDICAL LEAVE LEGISLATION
LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS URGED TO SUSTAIN PROGRAMS FOR OLDER PEOPLE
GOV. CASEY ASKS LABOR LEADERS TO BACK HIS PROPOSALS TO PUT PEOPLE BACK TO WORK
GOV. CASEY COMMENDS HOUSE FOR PASSING PACE PLAN
GOVERNOR CRITICIZES SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION ON PACE RESCUE PLAN
AARP Pennsylvania Calls State Pharmaceutical Bill Expansion a Victory.
Pennsylvania Governor Rendell Signs Historic PACE/PACENET Expansion Bill Into Law; More Than 115,000 Additional Seniors Eligible in January.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Corbett Urges Consumers to Sign Up for Free Prescription Drug Benefits from Antitrust Settlement.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters