A proposal from the DWC would require opioids and benzodiazepines to be filled through a pharmacy.
The Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) announced a rule meeting set for April 20th from 4-5 PM MST. Department agenda for the date mentions a new provision 18-6(c)(2)(e) that would require opioids and benzodiazepines be filled through a pharmacy and not dispensed by a physician. Currently, opioids dispensed by physicians are limited to a three-day supply.
The House Committee on Labor & Public Employees agreed to report a bill out of committee necessitating that insurers notify injured workers if they plan to discontinue prescription care for any medication.
HB6550 received a favorable report from the House Committee on Labor & Public Employees this week. As introduced, the proposal requires insurers to notify injured workers if they plan to discontinue prescription care for any medication. Insurers will also be mandated to specify the reason for stopping prescription care. Injured workers are permitted to request a hearing on any proposed discontinuance of their prescription care no later than fifteen days after receipt of such notice. If approved, the bill would take effect on October 1st.
Newly proposed legislation in the State Senate would exempt Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) from public record requirements.
Senator Brodeur of Seminole County introduced a measure (SB1552) that would grant an exemption for Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) from public record requirements including examination files, investigation reports, and work-related papers. The bill is yet to be given an effective date, if passed; however, the legislation would be up for renewal in 2028.
The House chamber passed a measure that would permit Physician Assistants (PAs) and advanced practice nurses to dispense medications to patients.
HB557 received approval from the House chamber following a favorable report from the House Public Health Committee late last month. The bill allows Physician Assistants (PAs) and advanced practice nurses to dispense medications to patients if they hold at least one year of post-licensure clinical experience. Medications are limited to a five-day supply, and most schedule II substances are restricted except for emergencies. Senate committees will now review the bill for further consideration.
Members of the House agreed to passage on a bill requiring pharmacies to provide accessible prescription label information to persons with visual disabilities.
House legislators voted in favor of a bill that aims to improve pharmacy services for visually impaired individuals. SB608, as written, would require pharmacies to provide accessible prescription label information to persons with visual disabilities. Specifically, the legislation necessitates that pharmacies have alternate and accessible formats for patients who have difficulty reading or identifying prescription drug labels. If passed, the state Board of Pharmacy would be required to develop rules by December 31st of this year.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data indicates that the state of Maine recorded the highest rate of injury in 2021.
Federal officials report that the state of Maine experienced the highest rate of workplace injuries. In 2021 the state reported an incident rate of 4.7, a 9 percent increase from 2020. The current national injury rate for non-fatal workplace injuries stands at 2.9. The state's Department of Labor responded to the report believing it to be a positive as it implies that workers are correctly reporting accidents/illnesses and being treated in a timely fashion. The most common injuries in the state comprised of overexertion, slips, trips, and falls. Data for national injuries comes from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
A State Senate proposal would provide injured workers with the ability to sue insurers/employers who have acted in “bad faith” on workers’ compensation claims.
Members of the state Senate are developing legislation that intends to provide a tool to injured workers who have encountered difficulties with their claims. Legislation formulated by Sen. Skip Daly of Carson City would permit injured workers to sue insurers/employers who have acted in bad faith on workers' compensation claims. The proposal comes after 3,000 cases were backlogged for hearings due largely in part to denials causing injured workers to delay care for their injuries. Daly and supporters believe that the legislation could serve as a check on insurers to process claims in a more timely and appropriate manner. Without such a check, injured workers fear that insurers/employers will continue to delay care and “play God”.
The State Assembly is reviewing a bill that would undo the state’s direction of care protocols for in-state resident pharmacies.
SB1974 introduced in January, would undo the state’s direction of care protocols in workers’ compensation for in-state resident pharmacies. Language in the bill would change “require” network use to “encourage.” The bill garnered formal approval from the Senate chamber late last month and now awaits review in the Assembly Labor Committee.
Officials from the state Board of Pharmacy are formulating new rules that require out-of-state pharmacies engaging in compounding to provide proof of inspection within the last twelve months.
The state Board of Pharmacy introduced new rules concerning out-of-state pharmacies that engage in compounding. Rule 1140-01-.084 (4i) would require an out-of-state pharmacy that practices compounding to provide a proof of inspection form from the previous twelve months. A hearing date for this rule is set for May 8th, 2023.
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