AMPI Statement on Support for Provisions of House Agriculture Appropriations Bill

AMPI Statement on Support for Provisions of House Agriculture Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON – Today, the Alliance to Modernize Prescribing Information (AMPI) praised the House Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for provisions of the 2024 Agriculture Appropriations bill. For the first time, the funding bill does not contain a policy rider that prevented the FDA from promulgating rules that allow for the distribution of prescribing information to pharmacies and health care professionals in solely electronic form.

“The AMPI coalition strongly supports provisions of the House Agriculture Appropriations bill allowing the FDA to move forward with regulations to modernize prescribing information, including electronic delivery.  This long overdue, common-sense approach will improve patient safety, lower costs, and improve the environment. It is a big step forward to modernize health care,” said Sarah Schneider, AMPI spokesperson.

Under the current policy, which has not been updated since 1962, prescribing information sent to providers that contains important information related to a specific drug must be printed, running an average of 45 pages per prescription. This information is not intended for patients but rather contains the drug’s chemical makeup and information that informs a healthcare professional on the drug’s interaction with other drugs. In 2014, the FDA proposed a rule that would allow the electronic distribution of prescribing information. Since then, Congress has used the appropriations process to prevent the agency from finalizing that rule, requiring the bulky paper labels to be printed and distributed, even though many are immediately discarded by healthcare professionals for being outdated. Developing, printing, and distributing updates to paper prescribing information through the supply chain takes on average 8 to 12 months, meaning that the information is outdated by the time health care professionals receive the paper version, whereas the information online is updated in real-time.

This effort to remove the policy rider is supported by the AMPI, the American Pharmacists Association (APhA), and a coalition of stakeholders from across the country, including the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP), Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, Association for Accessible Medicines, BioNJ, CivicaRX, the Environmental Paper Network, the Healthcare Distribution Alliance, HealthCare Institute of New Jersey, the LUNGevity Foundation, the North Carolina Biosciences Organization, and the Texas Healthcare and Biosciences Institute.