GEORGIA PHARMACISTS MAY GET NEW GENERIC SUBSTITUTION RULES
Legislation under considerationby lawmakers in Georgiawould grant pharmacists inthe state increased flexibilityin substituting generics forbrand name drugs prescribedby physicians. The bill, sponsoredby Rep Buddy Carter, would allow such substitutionswithout checking back with the prescriber, provided that theswitches were preauthorized by the prescriber. For guidanceon determining which drugs to switch, pharmacists woulduse lists supplied by the patient's insurance plan—a movedesigned to control the cost of prescription coverage.
According to Carter, himself an independent pharmacist,the increased flexibility to substitute generics would saveprecious time for patients who now must wait until their doctorsare contacted to approve a substitution. Others, however,including former Health and Human Services SecretaryLouis Sullivan, have criticized the bill for empowering insurancecarriers to pressure doctors to prescribe generics.