Washington DC Arthritis Advocacy Victory

The Nation’s Capital Caps the Out-of-Pocket Costs of Medications

Congratulations D.C. Advocates! Because of your efforts, Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser signed the Specialty Drug Copayment Limitation Act. In the law, “specialty drug” means a prescription drug that is prescribed for a person with a physical, behavioral, or developmental condition that may have no known cure, is progressive, or can be debilitating or fatal if left untreated or undertreated, such as multiple sclerosis, hepatitis C and rheumatoid arthritis.

This is a significant win for the Washington D.C. arthritis community because the law caps specialty drug copayment or coinsurance out-of-pocket costs to no more than $150 for up to a 30-day supply, or $300 for a 90-day supply. The Specialty Drug Copayment Limitation Act will take effect on an insurance plan’s effective date or first renewal on or after January 1, 2018.

“Chronic rheumatoid arthritis significantly affects quality-of-life. It keeps people from their families, from working, walking and even having a job,” said Mark Guimond, director of state legislative affairs for the Arthritis Foundation. “This bill will significantly improve access to life-changing medications.”

The Foundation’s D.C. Advocates worked tirelessly, urging for passage of this law. Their work included sending letters, making phone calls to legislators, and testimony by Guimond before the D.C. City Council.

This win didn’t happen by accident and wouldn’t be possible without our Advocates who use their personal arthritis stories to educate legislators about this devastating disease and how they can help the arthritis community.

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