The Buckeye Institute: Ohio Should Allow Pharmacists to Provide the Medical Care They Are Trained to ProvideMay 06, 2020
Columbus, OH – On Wednesday, The Buckeye Institute submitted written testimony (see full text below or download a PDF) to the Ohio Senate Local Government, Public Safety, and Veterans Affairs Committee on the policies in Senate Bill 303, which would allow pharmacists to care for those with chronic conditions.
Noting that the policies in Senate Bill 303 are a “step in the right direction” and in line with The Buckeye Institute’s recommendations in its recent policy memo, Policy Solutions for the Pandemic: Enlisting Pharmacists to Fight COVID-19, Greg R. Lawson, research fellow at The Buckeye Institute, urged policymakers to “build on Senate Bill 303’s foundation with policies that will help Ohioans access the sort of drug treatment already offered in Florida and other states.”
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Pharmacists Can Help Expand Access to Care in Ohio
Interested Party Testimony
Ohio Senate Local Government, Public Safety, and Veterans Affairs Committee
Senate Bill 303
Greg R. Lawson, Research Fellow
The Buckeye Institute
May 6, 2020
Thank you, Chairman Manning, Vice Chair Brenner, Ranking Member Maharath, and members of the Committee, for the opportunity to submit written testimony regarding Senate Bill 303.
My name is Greg R. Lawson. I am a research fellow at The Buckeye Institute, an independent research and educational institution—a think tank—whose mission is to advance free-market public policy in the states.
This bill expands opportunities for pharmacists to care for those with chronic conditions. This step in the right direction accords with our recent policy memo, Policy Solutions for the Pandemic: Enlisting Pharmacists to Fight COVID-19, which recommended ways for Ohio to navigate the unique challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. As we suggested, cutting Ohio’s regulatory red tape and allowing pharmacists to test for and treat the flu, strep throat, and other common illnesses will relieve pressure elsewhere in the health care system by shifting the initial point of care for these treatable ailments away from the doctors and hospitals currently grappling with COVID-19. Florida is the most recent of many states to let pharmacists test and prescribe medication for illnesses like strep throat and influenza, and Ohio should join them.
The legislature should build on Senate Bill 303’s foundation with policies that will help Ohioans access the sort of drug treatment already offered in Florida and other states.
Expanding test-and-treat authority for pharmacists will prove essential should Ohio ever face another “all hands on deck” pandemic or a second wave of COVID-19 infections.
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