Pharmacists permitted to convert Rx refills under certain circumstances

In accordance with House Bill 2524, introduced in the WV House of Delegates, if a prescription authorizes a drug to be dispensed by refilling the prescription one or more times and the total quantity of the drug does not exceed a 90-day supply of the drug, a pharmacist who is filling or refilling the prescription may dispense a quantity of the drug that varies from the quantity or amount of the drug originally written on the prescription, if all the these conditions are met:

(1) The action taken by the pharmacists does not result in a quantity or amount of the drug being dispensed that exceeds the total quantity that may be dispensed by filling and refilling the prescription;

(2) The prescription is for one of the following: (a) a maintenance drug to be taken on a regular, recurring basis to treat a chronic condition; (b) a drug to be taken on a regular, recurring basis to prevent disease ; or (c) a contraceptive;

(3) If the prescription is for a maintenance drug, the patient has used an initial 30-day supply of the drug, or a 90-day supply of the drug has previously been prescribed to the patient, and the pharmacist determines, after consulting with the patient, that the drug has stabilized the patient’s condition;

(4) The prescription is not for a controlled substance as set forth in 60A-1-1;

(5) The prescriber did not state “Brand Medically Necessary”; and

(6) The pharmacist consults with the patient, and the pharmacist determines the action authorized by this section is appropriate for the patient.

This section does not require a health insurer, government health care program, pharmacy benefit manager, or other entity that offers benefit plans to provide coverage for a drug in a manner that is inconsistent with the patient’s benefit plan.

House Bill 2524 was referred on January 18 to the House of Delegates Health and Human Resources Committee for consideration.