Committee supports Libby bill to protect local independent pharmacies

Posted: February 10, 2020 | Senator Libby

The Legislature’s Health Care, Insurance and Financial Services Committee voted 5-4 on Thursday to support an amended version of LD 1928, “An Act To Prohibit Health Insurance Carriers from Retroactively Reducing Payment on Clean Claims Submitted by Pharmacies,” a bill from Sen. Nate Libby, D-Lewiston, that would protect Maine’s local independent pharmacies and improve cost transparency for prescription drugs. The Democrats on the committee voted in favor of Sen. Libby’s amendment to the bill.

“Local, independent pharmacies are getting jerked around by insurance companies just the same as everyday Mainers are. Some pharmacies are finding themselves owing hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in unexpected costs,” said Sen. Libby. “This bill helps them stay in business, serving our communities.”

As amended, LD 1928 would prohibit insurance carriers and any entity providing pharmacy services on behalf of an insurance carrier from charging a pharmacy or holding the pharmacy responsible for any fee related to a claim that is not apparent at the time the insurance carrier processed the claim, that is not reported on the remittance advice or after the initial claim is adjudicated by the carrier.

Several small business pharmacy owners submitted testimony in favor of the bill at a recent public hearing. 

The bill now faces votes in the Maine Senate and House.