Sen. Wyden visits NCPA board member’s community pharmacy

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, visited Grants Pass Pharmacy in Grants Pass, Ore.

Grants Pass Pharmacy is owned by National Community Pharmacists Association board member Michele Belcher, who also has been serving the Southern Oregon community since 1933. NCPA senior vice president of government affairs Karry La Violette also attended the visit.

Sen. Wyden touted that independent community pharmacies like Belcher’s are “key to the quality of life in smaller Oregon towns and great allies in the battle to reduce prescription drug prices.”

The senator and Belcher also discussed efforts to reduce drug prices that are underway in the Senate Finance Committee, including the senator’s intention to work with the committee’s chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, to advance legislation to address affordability and access.

"We’re grateful to have Senator Wyden’s support of community pharmacy and its patients, whether by visiting pharmacies like Michele Belcher’s Grants Pass Pharmacy, leading a bipartisan investigation into PBM spread pricing, or hauling in PBM executives to testify about their business tactics before the Senate Finance Committee,” La Violett said. "We agree that more transparency and a simpler system are needed and are eager to continue partnering with him on this important work.”

Sen. Wyden specifically highlighted his Creating Transparency to Have Drug Rebates Unlocked (C-THRU) Act (S. 476), which would require pharmacy benefit managers in Medicare to pass through to plan sponsors a minimum percent of the aggregate amount of rebates they negotiate, as well as provide negotiated prices of Part D drugs at the point of sale.