WASHINGTON STATE

HOUSE DEMOCRATS

State House passes bill to address the cost of treating illness

OLYMPIA – The Washington State House of Representatives has passed a bill protecting patients from excess medication charges by ensuring transparency at the pharmacy. The Affordable Medication for Patients Act, sponsored by Rep. Vandana Slatter (D-48, Bellevue), prohibits contracts that keep pharmacists from providing information on lower cost options. It also limits the amount a patient can pay at the pharmacy.

“For many, treating illness is becoming less affordable each day,” said Rep. Slatter. “Often, patients are not aware of where the costs come from or what their options are. Frequently this is because pharmacy benefit managers make contracts that prohibit pharmacists from sharing this information. We need to stop this practice and put patients first.”

HB 2296 will now head to the Senate for consideration. If adopted, the bill will help patients access information about the cost of medicine and lower cost options.

“This bill preserves the pharmacy’s ability to share information with consumers, making the process more transparent. This will lead to lower costs and better health outcomes for patients,” added Rep. Slatter.