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First-ever Senate Community Pharmacy Caucus established

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Sens. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., and Jon Tester, D-Mont., have established the first-ever Senate Community Pharmacy Caucus, an effort endorsed Wednesday by the National Community Pharmacists Association.

NCPA’s efforts to help establish a Senate Pharmacy Caucus were reported one month ago here.

The new Senate caucus is intended to complement the Congressional Community Pharmacy Caucus in the House, founded in 2007, and currently co-chaired by Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., and Mike Ross, D-Ark. That caucus now features 30 House members.

"Sens. Jerry Moran and Jon Tester are terrific leaders for the inaugural Senate Community Pharmacy Caucus," NCPA's EVP and CEO Douglas Hoey said. "They have long advocated common-sense solutions for the challenges facing community pharmacists and their patients. These have included increasing patient choice and reducing wasteful pharmaceutical spending by reforming pharmacy benefit management business practices and preserving patient access to durable medical equipment and in-person counseling on its proper use. Indeed, greater utilization of clinically trained community pharmacists in federal programs like Medicare and Medicaid can produce improvements in all metrics of success."

Sen. Moran was one of the original founders of the Congressional Community Pharmacy Caucus in 2007 when he was a member of the House. He was the lead sponsor of several pieces of legislation in the House, including the Community Pharmacy Fairness Act of 2009 and legislation which provided an accreditation exemption for small pharmacies supplying durable medical equipment.

"Community pharmacists are vital to our health care delivery system," Moran said. "In many Kansas communities and throughout the country, the local pharmacist is a patient's most direct link to health care. The access to medications, health care supplies, and counsel pharmacists provide matters greatly to the health and well-being of every American. This caucus will provide valuable resources to senators as we work to see that all Americans have better access to affordable health care."

"Community pharmacies provide essential services for Montana's rural communities," Tester added. "These small businesses are a critical part of what keeps rural America strong and healthy. If folks in rural America don't have access to life-saving medicine and medical supplies, rural America will disappear. That's why I'm proud to champion Montana's community pharmacies and the good-paying jobs they support."

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