State Chamber speaks out after Gov. Stitt signs pharmacy bill

OKLAHOMA CITY – A measure that would allow patients to use the pharmacy of their choice has now been signed into law.

House Bill 2632, which creates the Patient’s Right to Pharmacy Choice Act, was signed into law by Gov. Stitt on Tuesday.

The Patient’s Right to Pharmacy Choice Act establishes “minimum and uniform access to a provider and standards and prohibitions on restrictions of a patient’s right to choose a pharmacy provider.”

Governor Stitt vetoed a similar version of the bill earlier this session.

HB 2632 no longer applies to self-funded benefit plans, which conflict with federal law.  That was a main reason Governor Stitt vetoed the Senate version of the bill the first time around.

However, not everyone is happy with Stitt's final approval of the measure.

“House Bill 2632 was supposed to be a compromise that would keep prescription prices low for employees and allow employers to manage health care costs. Unfortunately, what was signed into law today fails on both sides," said Fred Morgan, president and CEO of the State Chamber of Oklahoma, in a statement. “Now that House Bill 2632 is law in Oklahoma, we can likely expect two things to happen: First, we will see prescription drug costs increase for Oklahoma families. Second, we’ve opened Oklahoma up to avoidable court cases on the legality of House Bill 2632. Similar legislation in other states has been struck down by federal law.

“The State Chamber of Oklahoma will continue to defend the business community’s ability to provide affordable health care benefits by promoting policies that reduce the cost of health care for Oklahoma employers and the hard-working Oklahomans they employ," the statement said.

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