PRESS RELEASE

Alexandria, Va. Jan. 23, 2015 - Leading health care organizations have endorsed new bipartisan legislation intended to help reduce prescription drug abuse.

The Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2015 (H.R. 471) was introduced by Reps. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Judy Chu (D-Calif.), Tom Marino (R-Pa.) and Peter Welch (D-Vt.).

The American Pharmacists AssociationHealthcare Distribution Management AssociationNational Association of Chain Drug Stores and National Community Pharmacists Association sent a letter to the bill sponsors expressing support.

"Millions of Americans depend on prescription drugs to treat and cure illness, alleviate pain and improve quality of life," they wrote. "Unfortunately, prescription drug abuse is steadily rising. Federal agencies and private parties in the drug supply chain are working diligently to prevent drug abuse and diversion; however, it is also imperative that patients with legitimate pain are able to obtain their prescriptions without disruption. To that end, we believe the legislation will foster greater collaboration, communication and transparency between industry stakeholders and regulators, leading to more effective efforts to combat abuse while protecting patients."

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The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA®) represents the interests of America's community pharmacists, including the owners of nearly 23,000 independent community pharmacies. Together they represent an $88.8 billion health care marketplace, dispense nearly 40% of all retail prescriptions, and employ more than 300,000 individuals, including over 62,000 pharmacists. To learn more, go towww.ncpanet.org, visit facebook.com/commpharmacy, or follow NCPA on Twitter @Commpharmacy.