Prior Authorization Reform Passes Senate

ST.PAUL, Minn. – Minnesotans will have an easier time receiving prescribed medications thanks to legislation passed on Friday. The legislation removes barriers from the time a doctor prescribes a medication to a patient to the time it takes a patient to pick it up at the pharmacy, and was passed as part of the larger Health and Human Services omnibus bill.

The legislation takes important steps in adding transparency and stronger protocols to a process known as prior authorization (PA). Currently, many patients who are prescribed a medication from their doctor must go through the PA process for medication. While intended as a way to ensure high-quality, cost-effective medications it is often getting in the way of patients receiving the medication that is right for them.

“These important reforms will offer clarity to patients and reduce headaches for doctors,” said Senator Melisa Franzen (DFL-Edina). “We’ve worked hard to find a compromise that ensures PA continues its important role, but we have made sure that it is only applied when needed, saving time for our doctors and ensuring our patients continue to receive high-quality care.”

The bipartisan legislation, carried by Representative Tony Albright (R-Prior Lake) in the House has the support of the Minnesota Medical Association and over 40 patient advocate groups. More information can be found at www.fixpanow.com. The prior authorization reform bill will improve transparency of medication coverage, limit changes to such coverage during an enrollment year, ensure ongoing coverage when patients move to new insurance policies, and use prescribed data to support improved prescribed practices instead of delaying patient care.

For information on this or any legislation, please contact Sen. Melisa Franzen at 651-296-6238 or by email at sen.melisa.franzen@senate.mn.

Senator Franzen
Melisa Franzen represents District 49 in the southwest Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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