CCAGW ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR GENERIC DRUG BILL | Council For Citizens Against Government Waste


Press Release

For Immediate ReleaseContact:  Sean Rushton or Melissa Naudin
January 23, 2001(202) 467-5300


Tallahasee, Fla. – The Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW) today announced support for Florida House Bill 69, which would remove AB rated generic or therapeutically equivalent drugs from Florida’s negative formulary is a good bill and deserves the support of the Florida legislature.  The text of Citizens Against Government Waste Health and Science Director Elizabeth Wright’s remarks are below.

“They say the third time is the charm and when it comes to this issue, the 110,052 Florida members and supporters of the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste certainly hope so.

“The negative formulary is a relic.  It was created prior to the implementation of the strict standards and regulations the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) now uses to approve generic drugs for the marketplace.  Pharmacists today can look at something called the Orange Book, published by the FDA, which tells when a proprietary drug has a therapeutically equivalent generic drug and what generic drugs can be safely substituted for the proprietary drug.  The Orange Book can even be found on the Internet.

“Florida’s negative formulary creates an unnecessary hurdle to accessing important prescription drugs. The resulting effect is that the marketplace for certain generic drugs have been stifled, raising healthcare costs to its citizens, particularly seniors.  It is costing Florida consumers and patients millions of dollars each year.  Although we would rather see the negative formulary completely eliminated, this bill, which will only limit AB rated drugs from the negative formulary is a good start.

“Passing this bill will help free up valuable healthcare dollars that can be used on other health expenses.  It has been shown that generic drugs can save anywhere from 25 to 80 percent per prescription.  These savings are particularly helpful to the elderly and low-income individuals who often have to pay for prescription drugs out of pocket.  It will also help save taxpayers millions of dollars in the Medicaid program. A study conducted last year by the Senate Health, Aging and Long-Term Care Committee showed that the Florida Medicaid program could save approximately $8 million a year if therapeutic equivalent generics were substituted for the drugs on just the negative formulary list alone!

“CCAGW commends Representatives Argenziano and Fasano for writing and introducing this important legislation.  Florida citizens have waited far too long to see this important piece of legislation implemented.  It is now time for action.  It is time for the citizens of Florida to get the same kind of access to safe, cost-saving generic drugs that other Americans enjoy across the United States.”

CCAGW is the lobbying arm of Citizens Against Government Waste, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, mismanagement and abuse in government.


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