Maine Pharmacy Association

DHHS shared guidance documents for e-prescribing and opioid dispensing

DHHS shared guidance documents for e-prescribing and opioid dispensing.  Notably, “A pharmacist is NOT required to verify that a practitioner has a waiver of the requirement to electronically prescribe…” To review the official documents, please click on the links below. Electronic-Prescribing-Clarifications Opioid Dispensing Clarification    

E-Prescribing Grace Period Notice and Chapter 488 User Guide

The deadline for mandatory e-prescribing of opioids was rapidly approaching on July 1st. However, the State sent the following communication announcing a 31 day grace period for enforcement of the penalties for violating the e-prescribing provision.  This is good news and will give prescribers and dispensers a little more time to prepare. DHHS provided material on other provisions in Chapter […]

2017 Scholarship Golf Scramble

Join us for our 2017 Scholarship Golf Scramble ! Where: Val Halla Country Club When: Saturday, August 12, 2017 Shotgun start 1pm Includes 18 holes of golf on a championship course, golf cart, BBQ dinner at Rachel’s on the Green! Cost: Single Golfer: $110.00 Foursome: $400.00 Dinner Only: $35.00 Corporate or personal hole sponsorship: $75 […]

Pharmacists from across Maine convene in Augusta to advocate for profession and patients

Pharmacists and pharmacy students from across the state convened in Augusta on May 30th to advocate for LD 572.   Update: Senate passes LD 572; now on to the House!  LD 572 specifies in statute that the “Practice of Pharmacy” is “the provision of health care services” and that “Pharmacists” are “providers of health care services”. […]

LD6 and LD44 Are Successfully Moving Through the Legislative Process

Good news!!  Two bills, LD 6, an “An Act to Prohibit Insurance Carriers from Retroactively Reducing Payment on Clean Claims Submitted by Pharmacies” and LD 455, “An Act Relating to the Provision of Smoking Cessation Services by Pharmacists” are moving through the legislature process. LD 6, an “An Act to Prohibit Insurance Carriers from Retroactively Reducing Payment on […]

Archive for January, 2014

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Ms. Arnold spoke at the Partnership for Safe Medicine’s Interchange 2013 Conference in Washington, DC, Amelia Arnold, PharmDabout the events in her state that resulted in the passage of a controversial law that allows non-FDA approved medication to be imported from unregulated sources into the state of Maine.

At the heart of this recent law is a Canadian business called CanaRX that Ms. Arnold stated “came into Maine with a marketing scheme that bowled over legislators and employees unions.”

She pointed out that CanaRX’s claim that their pharmaceuticals are only sourced from Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and Australia hides the fact that the drugs may originate far from these countries. She went on to say that these drug imports are not being tested or verified by any Maine medical professional, stating, “This legislation gives Maine Pharmacy Association no control to oversee CanaRX operations.”

As she explained to PBS during a recent interview, “Who’s going to find out that the pharmacy’s legitimate? Those companies can participate in what we call parallel importation. So they can get their drugs from other countries. So just because it’s coming into the U.S. from Canada doesn’t mean that it started in Canada.”

Ms. Arnold is also a member of the Maine Pharmacy Association, whose statement on Maine’s drug importation law makes quite clear the dangers posed to consumers by such legislation:

“Despite our best efforts to educate lawmakers about the real public health risks of illegal Rx drug importation, the Maine 126th legislature passed a bill, LD 171, which allows an unlicensed ‘entity’ (e.g., a broker in another country) to import Rx drugs from Canada, UK and Northern Ireland, Australia or New Zealand into Maine. This ‘entity’ is ‘exempt from licensure’ and thus any regulatory oversight. This new law does not provide patients in Maine with any recourse if a counterfeit or adulterated prescription drug is shipped to their home. The scope of this new law could even include controlled, addictive Rx drugs. Patients lives are at risk.”

January 9th, 2014: The Labor, Commerce, Research, and Economic Development Committee unanimously voted “ought NOT to pass” on LD 449 – “An Act To Ensure Consumer Choice in the Purchase of Prescription Drugs”.    LD 449 sponsored by Senator Douglas Thomas was one of two bills introduced in the 126th legislative session which would authorize the importation of prescription drugs.  The other drug importation bill, LD 171, was enacted into public law and took effect on October 9th, 2013.  Maine Pharmacy Association et al filed suit in the United States District Court for the Disctrict of Maine Challenging the legality of this pharmaceutical importation ordinance.  The lawsuit against LD 171, Public Law 2013, Chapter 373 is ongoing.  Today’s vote by the LCRED Committee to NOT pass the drug importation companion bill, LD 449, is a step forward for public safety and the profession of pharmacy.

The new Board of Pharmacy Rules that took effect 12-11-2013 are now available on the Board’s website.

Significant amendments were adopted which affect chapters regulating the Licensure of Pharmacists, Administration of Drugs & Vaccines, Pharmacy Student Internship Programs, Licensure of Employment of Pharmacy Technicians, Licensure of Retail Pharmacies, Operation of Retail Pharmacies, Receipt and Handling of Prescription Drug Orders, Automated Pharmacy Systems, Retention of Records, and Unprofessional Conduct.

Chapter 18, Sterile Pharmaceuticals, was repealed.  New regulatory chapters include 35-Licensure of Extended Hospital Pharmacies, 36-Licensure of Opioid Treatment Programs, 37-Licensure of Sterile Compounding Pharmacies, and 38-Licensure of Closed-Shop Pharmacies.

Joe Bruno, President of the Maine Board of Pharmacy, will be providing a law continuing education update at the Maine Pharmacy Association Spring Convention in Freeport, Maine, on April 25-27th, 2014.  Save the date!

Best regards,

Kenneth “Mac” McCall, BPharm, PharmD

President | Maine Pharmacy Association

Happy 2014 from the Maine Pharmacy Association!

Save the Date: MPA Annual Spring Conference
April 25-27, 2014
Freeport, Maine