Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 033539
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File Number: 033539 File Type: Resolution Status: Amended
Version: 0 Reference: Control: County Commission
File Name: IMPORTATION OF CANADIAN PRESCRIPTION DRUGS Introduced: 12/17/2003
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action:
Agenda Date: 1/20/2004 Agenda Item Number: 10A8
Notes: SEE #041342 FOR FINAL VERSION AS ADOPTED. this is amendment to 033401 Title: RESOLUTION DIRECTING THE COUNTY MANAGER, THROUGH THE OFFICE OF COUNTYWIDE HEALTHCARE PLANNING AND GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION DEPARTMENT/RISK MANAGEMENT DIVISION, TO CONDUCT A FEASIBILITY STUDY REGARDING THE IMPORTATION OF CANADIAN PRESCRIPTION DRUGS FOR COUNTY EMPLOYEES AND SENIOR CITIZENS [SEE ORIGINAL ITEM UNDER FILE NO. 033401]
Indexes: HEALTH CARE
Sponsors: Katy Sorenson, Prime Sponsor
  Jimmy L. Morales, Co-Sponsor
  Dorrin D. Rolle, Co-Sponsor
  Rebeca Sosa, Co-Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 1/20/2004 10A8 Amended
REPORT: County Attorney Ginsburg stated Commissioner Heyman had requested that she be added as a cosponsor of the foregoing proposed resolution. See Agenda Item 10A8 Amended; Legislative File No. 041342.

County Attorney 12/17/2003 Assigned Eugene Shy 12/17/2003

Economic Development and Human Services Committee 12/10/2003 2Famd Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation with committee amendment(s) P
REPORT: Assistant County Manager Barbara Jordan requested the foregoing proposed resolution be amended to add that the Office of Countywide Healthcare Planning would confer with the General Services Administration Department/Risk Management Division in conducting the foregoing feasibility study. Commissioner Sorenson accepted the foregoing requested amendment. Commissioner Seijas requested the County Attorney's Office review the foregoing proposed resolution. She indicated it was her understanding that prescription drug purchases from Canada were in the process of being eliminated. Commissioner Seijas recommended that between now and the time this item was considered by the Board in January 2004 that staff should clarify whether the County could purchase prescription drugs from Canada. Assistant County Manager Jordan stated part of the foregoing feasibility study would be for staff to review the re-importation of prescription drugs from Canada and whether that would be approved by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION DIRECTING THE COUNTY MANAGER, THROUGH THE OFFICE OF COUNTYWIDE HEALTHCARE PLANNING AND GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION DEPARTMENT/RISK MANAGEMENT DIVISION, TO CONDUCT A FEASIBILITY STUDY REGARDING THE IMPORTATION OF CANADIAN PRESCRIPTION DRUGS FOR COUNTY EMPLOYEES AND SENIOR CITIZENS

BODY
WHEREAS, Miami-Dade County currently assists its employees in covering the cost of prescription drugs through its group healthcare plans; and
WHEREAS, the combined expenditures between the County and its employees on prescription drugs totals approximately $27 million annually; and
WHEREAS, over 182,000 senior citizens in Miami-Dade County over the age of 65 have a household income under 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level; and
WHEREAS, it is estimated that one out of every five senior citizens takes at least five prescription medications a day; and
WHEREAS, expenditures for prescription drugs are increasing at a faster rate than any other component in healthcare, thereby making the cost for seniors more expensive every year; and
WHEREAS, studies have shown that prescription drug costs in Canada are substantially lower (30-80 percent) than in the United States, and that such drugs are safe and manufactured in full compliance with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations; and
WHEREAS, states such as Illinois have estimated a total savings of up to $90 million to be gained by re-importation of prescription drugs from Canada; and
WHEREAS, this Board created the Office of Countywide Healthcare Planning to implement programs that improve access to healthcare for all residents of Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, a study should be conducted by the Office of Countywide Healthcare Planning and General Services Administration Department/Risk Management Division to determine the feasibility of "carving out" prescription drugs from existing County health plans, and instead, offering a voluntary prescription drug option through the importation from Canadian pharmaceutical companies to generate savings to the County and its employees; and
WHEREAS, the savings generated from use of a Canadian prescription drug plan for County employees could be used to subsidize the costs of prescription drugs for Miami-Dade County's low-income senior citizens; and
WHEREAS, the importation of pharmaceuticals from Canada into the United States is currently prohibited unless authorized by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and the Commissioner of Customs,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that:
Section 1. This Board hereby directs the County Manager, through the Office of Countywide Healthcare Planning and General Services Administration Department/Risk Management Division, to conduct a feasibility study to 1) determine the cost savings to the County and its employees from a voluntary Canadian prescription drug plan, and 2) in consultation with the County Attorney's Office to identify any potential liability issues associated with this program, and 3) create a program using the cost savings, to assist low-income seniors to pay for their prescription drugs. The Office of Countywide Healthcare Planning, General Services Administration Department/Risk Management Division and the County Attorney's Office are directed to report their findings to the Board of County Commissioners within sixty (60) days.
Section 2. This Board hereby urges the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services and the FDA to support the importation policy for Canadian prescription drugs that would allow the importation of prescription drugs from Canada.
Section 3. The Office of Intergovernmental Affairs is directed to include this request in its 2004 Federal Legislative Package.



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