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New bill would expand legend drug donation

Posted at 9:17 AM, Jan 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-29 11:17:39-05

BOISE — The Idaho Health and Welfare Committee voted unanimously today to advance legislation designed to expand who can donate and who can receive donated drugs.

It's an amendment to the current Idaho Legend Drug Donation Act, an act that allows qualifying institutions like pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes, and drug manufacturers to donate certain prescription drugs to clinics and centers across the state for redistribution.

This amendment would expand that act, allowing anyone with unused, unopened medications, to donate. But it would also allow community health centers, free medical clinics, designated regional behavioral health centers, and certain state charitable institutions to accept donations.

"It won't allow any opioids to be donated and received and such like that. We'll keep it really simple. They're called legend drugs so they need a doctors prescription still, but they're things that will really help folks with like blood pressure, diabetes," said Representative Sue Chew.

It's an effort to help those who cannot afford their prescriptions, and it’s available to Idaho residents who are not eligible for Medicare or Medicaid and cannot afford private prescription drug insurance.

The new bill would ultimately leave it up to the clinic or center accepting the donation to ensure the drug has not been adulterated.