UF Pharmacy Students Writing Lawmakers About Bills

(From the University of Findlay)

University of Findlay pharmacy students will be putting pen to paper as they write letters to state legislators regarding two bills currently being discussed. During the class, the first group of students will take time to write letters that could change their future careers forever.

House Bill 73 would require pharmacists to fill prescriptions for off-label medications if the physician making the request deems it “medically appropriate.” The bill that started in and passed in the House, gained traction after Ivermeticin was prescribed to treat COVID-19. Due to the medication being off-label and typically prescribed for parasitic worms and skin conditions, pharmacists were declining to fill it. House Bill 73 would require pharmacists to fill the prescription as recommended by the doctor, even if it is against the pharmacist’s professional judgement.

House Bill 80 has been introduced in the House, but has yet to go up for a vote. The bill would authorize pharmacists to conduct screenings, order labs and diagnostic tests, evaluate the results, and treat for influenza, COVID-19, and strep throat. Currently, Ohio pharmacists are able to fill prescriptions to treat these illnesses, but they are not able to diagnose and prescribe the medication themselves, despite their extensive training in recommending medications appropriately. This legislation would change that, and in doing so, increase access to care in the community setting.