A bill recently introduced into the House of Representatives will make pharmacists eligible for reimbursement as health care providers for certain services under Medicare if it becomes law. HR 4190, introduced on March 11, 2014, by Representatives Brett Guthrie (R-Kentucky), G.K. Butterfield (D-North Carolina), and Todd Young (R-Indiana), would amend the Social Security Act of 1935 so pharmacists are recognized as providers under Medicare Part B.
The bill would allow state-licensed pharmacists to provide care for patients in medically underserved communities and to be paid for their services. The services that pharmacists could provide include immunizations, diabetes screenings and self-management education, cardiovascular screenings, and behavioral therapy.
Since the beginning of 2013, a coalition of pharmacy associations has been pushing to win provider status for pharmacists, and the goal was a major topic at several conferences last year. Representatives of a range of associations, including the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the National Community Pharmacists Association, and the American Pharmacists Association, have expressed their support for the House bill.
To read our full article on the provider status bill, click here