Limit on Mail Order Pharmacies (S.3484-A/ A.4786)

Date: 2017

S.3484-A Golden/A.4786-A Joyner

MEMORANDUM IN OPPOSITION

Unshackle Upstate, a non-partisan, pro-taxpayer, pro-economic growth, education and advocacy coalition made up of business and trade organizations from all parts of Upstate New York, opposes this legislation.

This bill appears to be an effort to limit the use of mail order pharmacies in favor of local retail pharmacies.  If enacted, it would result in higher pharmaceutical costs for the state’s consumers and employers, undermining the ability of employers to provide affordable health care coverage. 

Mail order pharmacies have been proven to be a less expensive, high quality alternative for accessing prescription drugs and their existence would be undermined by this legislation.  At a time when Americans are using more prescription drugs than ever, the state’s goal should be to keep the cost of prescription medications as low as possible.

This legislation would not do that.  It would instead diminish the effectiveness and efficiencies – and the resulting cost savings -- of mail order pharmacies by criminalizing certain actions by pharmacy benefit managers.    

Unshackle Upstate has consistently been a leader in fighting for the state’s taxpayers and consumers.  While this bill purports to protect consumers, by enacting a law meant to protect a particular segment of the pharmaceutical industry, it would have exactly the opposite effect.

The high cost of private health insurance is one of the major issues of concern for our members and their employees. By reducing competition, this bill would lead to higher drug prices, harming consumers and employers who provide health care for their employees.

For these reasons, Unshackle Upstate opposes the enactment of this legislation.