“Today, a petition for writ of certiorari was filed with the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and Pennsylvania Senate President Pro Tempore.
“The application requests the U.S. Supreme Court to take up an appeal of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s actions, which held the 2011 Congressional map plan was unconstitutional under the Free and Equal Elections Clause and adopted its own court-drawn remedial plan.
“The petition argues that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court violated the U.S. Constitution’s Elections Clause when it legislated from the bench adding new requirements for drawing congressional districts which do not exist in either the Pennsylvania Constitution or the U.S. Constitution.
“The Pennsylvania Supreme Court further violated the Elections Clause by implementing a remedial phase that did not give the General Assembly an ‘opportunity’ to enact a new map.
“It is important to note that this filing will have no impact on the elections this fall. Still, we believe the voters of Pennsylvania deserve an answer as to whether the state Supreme Court overstepped its authority. We believe it did.”
Community pharmacists Wednesday thanked House members for unanimously passing legislation to help make prescription reimbursements paid to pharmacies a more transparent process under the state Medicaid Program.
The House passed House Bill 2212 introduced by Rep. Doyle Heffley that will give the Department of Human Services more oversight into the prescription reimbursements paid to pharmacies by the state Medicaid program through Pharmacy Benefit Managers making the whole process more open to scrutiny.
The bill now goes to the full Senate for action.
This statement was released by Patricia Epple, CEO of the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association--
“We want to thank members of the House and the bipartisan Community Pharmacy Caucus for their vote and leadership on this critical issue.
“Rep. Heffley’s bill will shine some light on the prescription reimbursements made by Pharmacy Benefit Managers under the state Medicaid Program.
“We hope one outcome of this more open approach is fairer prescription reimbursements for community pharmacists who are now being reimbursed for many prescriptions at levels below the cost of prescription drugs by Pharmacy Benefit Managers.
“We also believe a more transparent process will help prevent the conflict of interest where much higher prescription reimbursements are paid to pharmacies owned by companies related to Pharmacy Benefit Managers as we have seen in other states.
“We also encourage the House to take final action on House Bill 2211 introduced by Rep. Judy Ward that will prohibit the inclusion of gag clauses in community pharmacy contracts to help prescription patients reduce their out-of-pocket expenses.
“Rep. Ward’s bill will free community pharmacists from the ‘gag order” they are under from companies serving as Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBM) and, for the first time, allow pharmacists to tell their prescription patients how to reduce their out-of-pocket expenses.”