Two of the U.S.’s northwestern states have recently announced passage of provider status legislation for pharmacists.
On June 10th 2015, Oregon announced “with HB 2028, groups of doctors and pharmacists can now design and utilize collaborative agreements to increase access to pharmacist care and decrease costs for patients. The legislation also tasks the Oregon Health Authority, in consultation with the Oregon Board of Pharmacy, to establish statewide protocols for pharmacist delivery of services such as smoking cessation and travel health services.”
Oregon’s success followed the May 11, 2015 Washington state press release. Washington’s ESSB 5557 requires health insurance carriers to recognize pharmacists in the same way as other providers. “..pharmacists will have opportunities to increase collaboration within the health care team in patient-centered medical homes and Accountable Care Organizations, with the focus being on quality and safety,” said Jeff Rochon, the Chief Executive Officer of the Washington State Pharmacy Association.
Oregon and Washington join California in recognizing pharmacists as health-care providers. Great news! Now, what rules and statutes will assure compensation for the services provided? We’ll keep you informed.