Senators Priola and Moreno, bill sponsors, presented House Bill 20-1061. This bill allows pharmacists to prescribe and dispense HIV prevention medication if the pharmacist receives a standing order, as developed by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), or prescribes the medication in accordance with the statewide drug therapy protocol. When prescribing the medication, a pharmacist must:
- hold a current license to practice in Colorado;
- be engaged in the practice of pharmacy;
- have earned a doctorate degree and have at least 5 years of practice experience;
- carry adequate liability insurance; and
- complete a training program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education.
Six months after the effective date of the bill, the Board of Pharmacy, the Medical Board, and the Board of Nursing must develop a statewide drug therapy protocol. When creating the protocol, the boards must consider physician referrals, lab testing, appropriate referrals and counseling per federal guidelines, and patient follow-up care. Starting on June 1, 2020, the CDPHE must implement and maintain a standing order until the statewide drug therapy protocol is developed.
This bill also requires individual and group health benefit plans to provide coverage for HIV prevention medication prescribed by a pharmacist, except for integrated health delivery systems, which are exempt from the requirement. The carrier must provide the pharmacist an adequate consultative fee or dispensing fee and reimburse any in-network provider when prescribing and dispensing HIV prevention drugs. In addition, a carrier cannot require a patient to undergo step therapy or receive prior authorization before a pharmacist can prescribe and dispense a HIV infection drug.