Rosendale says plan will save on drug costs

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By: Phil Drake

Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Matt Rosendale said Wednesday his office will ask legislation be introduced in the 2019 session to change how the prescription drug industry operates in Montana with a Drug Savings Initiative to reduce costs of prescription drugs and other changes.

Senate Bill 71, to be introduced by state Sen. Al Olszewski, R-Kalispell, an orthopedic surgeon, would make insurance companies accountable for the prescription drug benefits offered through their health insurance plans, Rosendale said…

Rosendale said in a news release it would eliminate unethical practices, including kickbacks, price gouging, and clawbacks (where money already disbursed is taken back), by pharmaceutical industry middlemen that result in Montanans overpaying for medication…

Rosendale said he began investigating the cost of prescription drugs nearly two years ago. He said his chief legal counsel, Kristin Hansen, is leading the reform efforts.

“We have analyzed state legislation nationwide and found most of it doesn’t work or was overturned in court,” Hansen said in news release. “We had to start fresh, examine the pharmaceutical industry, and write legislation attacking the costs head on.”

She said SB 71 is “a uniquely Montana approach that we’re encouraging other states to adopt as well.”

Read more at the Great Falls Tribune