Senate sends Libby bill to protect local independent pharmacies to Governor Mills

Posted: March 17, 2020 | Senator Libby

The Senate voted unanimously on Tuesday to enact 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.

“It is vital to ensure that our local, independent pharmacies aren’t getting jerked around by insurance companies and that they can stay afloat,” said Sen. Libby. “This bill will help them stay in business, serving our friends, neighbors and communities in these trying times.”

As amended, LD 1928 would prohibit insurance carriers and pharmacy benefit managers 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. The goal is to prevent insurance carriers and pharmacy benefit managers from clawing back payments for clean prescription claims nine or twelve months after the fact.

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

LD 1928 has now been sent to Gov. Janet Mills, who has 10 days to sign it into law, veto it, or allow it to become law without her signature.