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Ohio Medicaid program: Beneficiaries can continue getting diabetes testing supplies from local pharmacies


ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Ohio's Medicaid program has decided not to establish a competitive bidding and mandatory mail-order program for diabetes testing supplies.

In a letter sent to the National Community Pharmacists Association, Ohio state Medicaid director John McCarthy said the state has opted for a manufacturer rebate model that gives the state access to discounted pricing from manufacturers. The NCPA said the state's decision was in response to advocacy efforts by the Ohio Pharmacists Association and a letter sent by the NCPA explaining the negative consequences that requiring mail order would have on diabetic Medicaid beneficiaries and the independent pharmacies that serve them.

"Independent pharmacists are part of the solution when it comes to high costs, especially in Medicaid," NCPA CEO Douglas Hoey said. "Ohio's Medicaid program found a compromise that maintains beneficiary choice and access to diabetes testing strips. We look forward to working collaboratively with Ohio and other states to reduce healthcare costs in a responsible and effective manner that doesn’t have unintended consequences. A special acknowledgement must be given to the Ohio Pharmacists Association and Ernie Boyd who took the lead in working toward this desired outcome."

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