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Small Doses, May 12, 2017
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MPhA News

Small Doses

May 12, 2017
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Breaking News

PATF Provisions Included in Final Minnesota HHS Bill Language

PATF Lobbyist Buck Humphrey reports that the Minnesota House and Senate HHS Conference Committee has finalized and adopted the provisions that will be included in the final HHS Omnibus bill they will pass on each floor and send to the governor, SF800.

Humphrey reports that the bill includes opioid labeling language and CMS reimbursement compliance (increase) language. Other provisions of note — including the reimbursement of injectables through a PBM, Opioid abuse reduction grants and the 4-day maximum opiate prescription mandate for acute dental pain or acute pain associated with refractive surgery — are also included in the final bill. Biosimilars language has been included in HF712; if passed, it will put Minnesota in compliance with similar laws across the U.S.

Once the final bills are passed and sent to Gov. Dayton, the real negotiations will begin. However, the governor also had the provisions we sought in his budget related to CMS reimbursement compliance, so they should not be an issue.


Call to Action: Ask Minnesota Senators to Support S. 1044

From National Community Pharmacists Association Advocacy Center Update: The Ensuring Seniors Access to Local Pharmacies Act, S. 1044, has been introduced by Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Tom Cotton (R-AK) and Joe Manchin (D-WV). The bill would allow community pharmacies in medically underserved areas to participate in preferred pharmacy networks if they can meet the terms and conditions the networks require. Enactment of this bill would help many Medicare patients across the country who reside in highly rural and low-income urban areas across the country.

We need help from Minnesota pharmacists to contact Minnesota Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken to ask that they cosponsor S. 1044 because the bill:

  • Increases competition among pharmacies in Part D drug plans allowing seniors to choose a pharmacy that best suits their individual needs.
  • Creates cost savings for beneficiaries and taxpayers as CMS has indicated competition is the best way to encourage price competition and lower costs.
  • Does not undermine Medicare preferred pharmacy networks, it simply fosters competition and enhances patient choice.

Please also share your stories of how limited preferred networks have impacted your patients.

Log in and send your message

News From MPhA

MPhA Election Results Announced

The Minnesota Pharmacists Association held elections for officers and directors of the association in April 2017. At its May meeting, the MPhA Board of Directors confirmed the results. Congratulations to Jason Varin, who has been elected as President-Elect!

In addition, MPhA members elected the following officers and directors for terms beginning June 20, 2017 at the Leadership Summit & House of Delegates Meeting at Midland Hills Country Club in Roseville:
Metro Board Member: Tim Affeldt

Members-at-Large: Cheng Lo, Rebecca Pickler and Sarah Westberg

Our congratulations and sincere thanks to all of the newly elected officers and directors for their willingness to serve MPhA. We also extend our gratitude to the candidates who were willing to serve, but did not capture enough votes to prevail in this election. We encourage all members to attend the Annual Leadership Summit and House of Delegates Meeting to meet our new and continuing association leaders.


Radio Interview with MPhA Leader Jeff Lindoo

MPhA Past President and current Public Affairs Committee Co-Chair Jeff Lindoo appeared on AM950 radio yesterday, discussing why it makes sense for pharmacists to generate prescriptions for some medications, including smoking cessation, birth control and travel meds. Thanks to Jeff for helping to spread the word about pharmacists scope of practice!


Nominate a Friend or Colleague Today for MPhA Awards and Recognition

The Minnesota Pharmacists Association frequently hears of pharmacy professionals who go above and beyond the call of duty. Help us recognize these pharmacy leaders and inspirations by nominating a pharmacist or pharmacy technician for one of our awards. Nominations are now open.

Read the full award descriptions.
See a list of past recipients.

Nomination form(s) and letters of support must be submitted to the MPhA office by Friday, June 16.

Minnesota News

U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson Champions Pharmacy Bills

On May 8, Congressman Collin Peterson agreed to co-sponsor H.R. 1316, the Prescription Price Transparency Act. Peterson, who represents Minnesota’s 7th Congressional District, has also co-sponsored H.R. 1038 (which bans retroactive DIR Fees) and H.R. 592, the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act of 2017. He also recently signed a letter to CMS requesting clarification on DIR fee guidelines.

MPhA Member Sherwood Peterson, Jr., who has been in contact with Rep. Peterson and his aides on a regular basis, says, “Rep. Peterson has been Minnesota pharmacy's ‘quiet champion’ during his entire career in Congress,” citing the congressman’s support for many pharmacist-friendly bills early on in the legislative process. MPhA thanks Rep. Peterson for his work; we also thank Sherwood Peterson for his work in contacting many of our elected officials at the state and federal level.


COP Professor Recognized as Master Preceptor

The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) has recognized Jacqueline Barber, PharmD, BCNSP, FASHP, along with six others as master preceptors for their dedication and commitment to excellence in experiential education and professional practice. Dr. Barber is a clinical professor at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy.

Read the full news release

Use Your Member Benefits

Technicians: Get a Discount on Power-Pak Continuing Education — Earn Your Board-Required CE with Unlimited Two-Year Access

MPhA has a partnership with Power-Pak, one of the nation’s leading providers of continuing education for pharmacy technicians and pharmacists. MPhA pharmacy technician members receive a 12.5% discount off the Power-Pak CE Pharmacy Technician Library where you can earn your entire CE required by the Minnesota Board of Pharmacy during the two-year access period.

Power-Pak’s pharmacy technician recertification courses were developed by educational specialists from Postgraduate Healthcare Education, Power-Pak C.E. in conjunction with faculty from leading colleges of pharmacy. The objectives for each T-designated course align with the core competencies listed in PTCB's Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination Blueprint. So if you are a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) through the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) these resources will allow you to meet your PTCB CE requirements as well.

Normally the two-year access fee is $39.95. There are more than 20 activities across topics from patient safety and new drugs to pharmacy calculations and drug storage. There are also live Webinars every month.

MPhA pharmacy technician members are able to access the library for $34.95. In addition, MPhA pharmacy technician members will receive a discount for the Power-Pak MTM Certificate Training Course for Pharmacy Technicians — $24.95 rather than the $29.95 regular fee.

National News

Senate Confirms Scott Gottlieb as FDA Commissioner

From Pharmacy Today, a publication of the American Pharmacists Association: The U.S. Senate confirmed Scott Gottlieb as FDA Commissioner on May 9. Gottlieb has promised to divest himself from several health care companies and recuse himself for one year from decisions involving those businesses.


Spending Bill Includes Compounding Language

From National Community Pharmacists Association Advocacy Center Update: President Trump has signed into law H.R. 244, which provides fiscal year 2017 full-year appropriations through September 30, 2017. The bill includes language that clarifies congressional intent on several compounding regulations implementing the Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA) of 2013. This is a win for NCPA and all compounding stakeholders who have worked to protect the practice of compounding.

The language calls on FDA to:

  • Draft a new memorandum of understanding (MOU) that allows pharmacies that meet all other requirements of 503A to “distribute” compounded products over state lines.
  • Draft new guidance to allow pharmacists to compound for “office use” in anticipation of receiving patient-specific prescriptions at a later time.
  • Acknowledge that pharmacies compounding under 503A are the purview of state boards of pharmacy and are not to be held to current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMPs).

Any final guidance on animal drug compounding will reference statutory provisions that specifically relate to veterinary practices.

MPhA Events

Register Now for MPhA’s 2017 Leadership Summit and House of Delegates Event

Join Minnesota pharmacists, student pharmacists and pharmacy technicians for a day of inspiration, information, influence building and crafting MPhA’s policy agenda at the 2017 MPhA Leadership Summit and House of Delegates meeting on Tuesday, June 20, at Midland Hills Country Club in Roseville, Minn. The program, themed, “Building Influence to Advance Patient Care & Practice,” is open to all members and non-members, in addition to those who will serve as delegates to the MPhA House of Delegates meeting. Non-delegates are welcome to stay and observe the policy deliberations that will lay the groundwork for MPhA’s policy agenda for the next year. MPhA seeks delegates — you will be asked if you are willing to serve and for which constituency during the registration process. MPhA will strive to assign delegates to their desired constituency but retains the right to assign delegates as needed to ensure all groups are represented.

Registration Information

The registration fee for the event is $45 for MPhA members, $60 for MPhA non-members and $20 for student pharmacists and includes breakfast, lunch and reception appetizers.

Register Online


MPhA’s Virtual Coffee Break: Primer Webinar for 2017 House of Delegates

Join MPhA Speaker of the House Kati Dvorak, Vice Speaker Tony Olson, Parliamentarian Terry Hietpas and the MPhA leadership for an Open Forum Webinar on Wednesday, May 24 between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Central Time during MPhA’s Virtual Coffee Break. We welcome both MPhA members and non-members for this webinar.

Register Online


Save the Date!

2017 MPhA Annual Learning Networking Event

September 7–8, 2017 | St. Paul RiverCentre

Did You Know?

Protect Your Greatest Asset with Disability Insurance

It is vitally important for everyone to protect their greatest asset — their ability to earn an income. Disability income coverage is available through PMC Advantage Insurance Services, Inc., a subsidiary of Pharmacists Mutual. Life can happen in an instant, so protect your financial future with disability insurance.


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