(photo credit: )
A private member’s bill that would ensure patients are not overcharged by their health funds for prescription drugs by dividing the number of pills they need into several doses has been approved by the Ministerial Committee on Legislation, giving it coalition backing as it goes to the plenum.
The bill was initiated by Kadima MK Rachel Adatto with Meretz MK Haim Oron and Shas MK Amnon Cohen.
The initiators of the bill had received complaints from numerous individuals that their health fund packages a month’s worth of medications in several containers, charging the customer multiple co-payments instead of one to cover an average month’s prescription.
The bill declares that the medications will be supplied to the patient in the container closest in size to the amount given in the doctor’s prescription. Health funds that violate the new regulation could be sued by their members.
However, the bill does not deal with the very frequent complaint that
many drug packages contain only 28 pills (covering four weeks
treatment) and not a full month’s worth.
The Health Ministry has been urged to require the drug companies to supply a month’s prescription in a package, but to no avail.
Adatto’s spokesman told The Jerusalem Post
that the MK, a physician by
profession, had become aware of this problem and was looking into
preparing another private member’s bill on this matter as well.