West Virginias healthcare plan for public employees has decided drug companies dont need to know what medications are being prescribed to its members.
The state Public Employees Insurance Agency has asked its pharmacy-benefit manager, St. Louis-based Express Scripts, to stop providing that information to drug manufacturers.
Advocates of ending the disclosures say the drug companies use the information to encourage doctors to prescribe brand name medications instead of cheaper, generic equivalents.
Basically, were shooting ourselves in the foot, said Don Perdue, a Democratic member of the West Virginia House of Delegates, and chairman of the House Health and Human Resources Committee.
Even though Express Scripts has agreed to stop providing the information to drug companies, Perdue said hes still considering introducing legislation to ban the practice for any company providing pharmacy benefits to West Virginia state health plans.
Representatives from Express Scripts could not be immediately reached for comment. -- by the Associated Press
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