Limit on doctors-dispensing-drugs revived in the House

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The House late Thursday moved forward with a controversial proposal that would limit the amount doctors can charge when they dispense drugs to workers-compensation insurance patients, reports the News Service of Florida. House members added the proposal to another workers compensation bill (HB 307), which will have to go to the Senate on Friday.

Business groups have made a top priority of limiting doctor-dispensing costs, arguing the move will reduce insurance premiums. Some doctors dispense what are known as “repackaged” drugs instead of writing prescriptions that patients fill at pharmacies. Repackaged drugs are not subject to the same price limits as drugs purchased at pharmacies.

Supporters of doctor dispensing say it helps ensure that patients get — and take — needed medications. The issue appeared on the verge of dying in the Senate this week, because it was stuck in a committee. But the House’s decision to amend it to HB 307 keeps the issue alive.

“Good policy’s never dead,” Florida Chamber of Commerce President Mark Wilson said after the House move.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.