Two Florida pharmacists, Shane Abbott and Gallop Franklin, will advance to the November election after winning their primaries for State House seats. Abbott, Owner of The Prescription Place in DeFuniak Springs, is running for the House District 5 seat. Gallop, pharmacist and professor at Florida A&M University’s College of Pharmacy, is running for the House District 8 seat. Best of luck to both pharmacists in their respective elections.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced a new executive order aimed at adding transparency to the role of pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) in administering prescription drug programs. This order, Order 22-164, will hold PBMs more accountable by requiring state agencies to review their contracts with PBMs to ensure that their costs are justified. The order attempts to address spread pricing and clawbacks, two predatory practices of PBMs. Gov. DeSantis’s order goes into effect immediately.
As of July 1, 2022, Florida pharmacy technicians can seek certification to provide immunizations, including all immunizations approved and under emergency use authorization by the FDA. In order to get certified, techs must complete an approved immunization course and operate under the authority of a pharmacist, physician, or nurse practitioner. This decision marks an important part in expanding both pharmacists’ and pharmacy technicians’ authority.
On June 20, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis passed a new law that puts the Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) in charge of PBMs instead of the Board of Pharmacy. This bill, HB 357, aims to address pitfalls in previous regulations and provide better oversight of PBMs through the OIR. In addition to the change in oversight, HB 357 requires PBMs to register with the state. If they don’t comply, they face a $10,000 fine. HB 357 takes effect July 1, 2022.
The new "Parents' Bill of Rights" is primarily an educational bill, however, there are also requirements listed for health care practitioners - which include pharmacists and pharmacies. The law states that health care practitioners may not provide "health care services" or prescribe medicinal drugs to a minor without obtaining parental consent. This law brings up interesting questions about how strict its interpretation will be and how it might limit the scope of a pharmacist's everyday practice when it comes to assisting potential minors.
SB 768 expands the types of vaccines that can be administered by pharmacists and pharmacy interns. It authorizes any vaccines listed in the federal CDC Adult Immunization Schedule, vaccines recommended by the CDC for international travel, and vaccines licensed for use in the United States or authorized for emergency use by the FDA. This law also authorizes certified pharmacists to administer the flu vaccine to children seven years and older.
The Florida Senate