Iowa House Eliminates Barriers to Prescriptions


Obtaining certain prescriptions will become easier for many Iowans.  HF 233, a bill reforming step therapy protocol, passed the Iowa House on Monday.  The bill was debated on the House floor after it was referred to the Human Resources committee by a subcommittee chaired by Representative Tom Moore (R, Griswold) with Representative Shannon Lundgren (R, Peosta) and Representative Mary Mascher (D, Iowa City).

Step therapy is a cost-saving measure which requires patients to try and document cheaper methods of treatment before insurance will cover more expensive drugs.  If a patient changes their insurance plan, they often have to repeat the trial process with the new insurance.  In his opening remarks, Representative Moore said that HF 233 provides exceptions to make it easier for patients to treat their illnesses more effectively.

“Patients and their doctors will no longer have to go through step therapy protocols if a patient has tried a drug and it has been proven to be ineffective or to have adverse side effects.  They would also be allowed to take the drugs that they know will work for them based on previous trial without having to repeat step therapy.”

The bill passed with 98 votes in favor and only two Representatives absent.

MacKenzie Dreeszen is a legislative assistant in the Iowa House and a political consultant specializing in fundraising.