Congress sends Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act to President

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS)-supported Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016 was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives this week.

This version is the same as the act passed by the Senate on March 17. The next step is the President's signature.

“This legislation is consistent with NACDS’ position that the complexity of these issues demands a 100 percent commitment to patient care and a zero tolerance for abuse,” NACDS President and CEO Steven C. Anderson said. “We appreciate the leadership of Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA), House Energy and Commerce Committee Vice Chairman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA), Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT), Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) for a tremendous accomplishment: guiding an excellent piece of legislation to the brink of becoming law.”

The legislation is intended to facilitate cooperation between health providers, pharmacies and law enforcement in ensuring zero tolerance for prescription drug abuse without reducing patients' access to medically necessary medications.

An earlier version of the bill was passed by the House in April 2015, but to advance to the President, the House and Senate must pass the same version of the legislation.

The journey began in March 2013 with the urging of Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Tom Coburn (R-OK) and six other senators for a review on ways to reduce prescription drug abuse.


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National Association of Chain Drug Stores 1776 Wilson Blvd Suite 200 Arlington, VA 22209