New Mexico Legislation Expands Access to Pharmacist Care

By Paul Abramowitz posted 02-21-2020 11:40

  

Dear Colleagues,

A concerted and highly organized effort has resulted in a significant step forward for pharmacists and patients in New Mexico. Pharmaceutical Services Reimbursement Parity (House Bill 42), passed by the New Mexico Senate on February 20, will expand access to healthcare by enabling pharmacist clinicians and other pharmacists with prescriptive authority to be reimbursed for clinical services.  

ASHP’s Government Relations team worked closely with the New Mexico Society of Health-System Pharmacists (NMSHP), the New Mexico Pharmacy Association, the UNM College of Pharmacy SSHP, and others to mobilize grassroots support urging Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and members of the New Mexico legislature to pass the bill.

This is a wonderful achievement for pharmacists and their patients in New Mexico. It also serves as a strong building block as we work toward achieving pharmacy provider status nationally. Supporting states in expanding access to pharmacist care is a key part of ASHP’s larger vision that medication use will be optimal, safe, and effective for all people all of the time.

Multiple studies have shown that pharmacist-provided clinical services expand access to care, improve chronic disease outcomes, and help decrease the cost of care with research estimating that every $1 invested in clinical services by pharmacists reduces overall healthcare costs by $4.[1] We are working hard to make sure that policymakers across the country recognize that value and the impact you bring to patient care.

I would like to express my thanks to all of the individuals and organizations that worked so hard to support the passage of the bill, including Keenan Ryan, NMSHP president, Dale Tinker, executive director of the New Mexico Pharmacists Association, and the students at UNM College of Pharmacy who worked to make sure every legislator in New Mexico understood the importance of this legislation. 

We have great momentum on this critical issue and look forward to continuing our advocacy efforts on expanding access to pharmacist care in other states to help improve patient health for all.

Thank you for being a member of ASHP and for everything that you do for your patients and our profession.

Sincerely,

Paul

[1] Avalere. Exploring Pharmacists’ Role in a Changing Healthcare Environment. May 21, 2014, available at https://avalere.com/insights/exploring-pharmacists-role-in-a-changing-healthcare-environment

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02-21-2020 17:17

Way to go NM Pharmacists!  About 22 years ago, I sat in at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy with other student doing a call to state legislators to support our practice act changes.  Back then, we thought we weren't far from getting recognized as providers.  It's encouraging to see efforts like these succeeding.  As Paul states in this blog post, we have momentum, lets keep building on these wins!