Connecticut Seal

Substitute Senate Bill No. 1123

Public Act No. 03-166

AN ACT CONCERNING ACCESS TO LOW-COST PRESCRIPTION DRUGS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2003) (a) There is established, within the Connecticut Health and Educational Facilities Authority, a revolving loan program for the purpose of providing loans to federally qualified health centers in this state to establish pharmacy facilities or a contract pharmacy arrangement with a community pharmacy or other pharmacy contractor in accordance with this subsection. Such program shall be funded by the authority in an amount not to exceed five hundred thousand dollars and such amount shall be deposited in the account established pursuant to subsection (b) of this section. The program shall be administered by the authority to provide loans to federally qualified health centers for the cost of establishing a pharmacy facility or a contract pharmacy arrangement with a community pharmacy or other pharmacy contractor to serve as a centralized prescription drug distributor for federally qualified health centers in this state that have established affordable pharmaceutical drug programs for qualified low income patients of such centers pursuant to Section 340B of P. L. 102-585.

(b) (1) There is established the federally qualified health centers loan account that shall contain any moneys required by law to be deposited in the account pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, and may contain any other funds as provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection. Any balance remaining in the account at the end of any fiscal year shall be carried forward in the account for the fiscal year next succeeding. Payments made on any loans made pursuant to this section shall be deposited in the account. Any investment earnings in the account shall be retained in and used for the purposes of the account.

(2) The authority may accept contributions from any source, public or private, for deposit in the account for purposes of such program.

(c) A federally qualified health center may apply for a loan pursuant to this section for not more than one hundred twenty-five thousand dollars. Such loan shall be for a period of not less than four years, and not more than ten years. The proceeds of such loan shall be used for the purchase or lease of computers, related software applications, consulting, automated medication dispensing equipment, inventory, working capital and other costs associated with the establishment of a pharmacy facility or a contract pharmacy arrangement. Such loans shall have such other terms and conditions and shall be subject to such eligibility, loan approval, credit and other underwriting requirements and criteria as are prescribed by the authority pursuant to subsection (g) of this section.

(d) On or before October 1, 2004, and annually thereafter, the authority shall submit to the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to public health a report, in accordance with section 11-4a of the general statutes, setting forth the following information: (1) A description of the pharmacy facilities or contract pharmacy arrangements receiving loans under this section, the general terms of such loans and the repayment rates of such loans; (2) an assessment of the impact of such loans on the number of prescriptions that are sold at the federal supply schedule price for prescription drugs; (3) the need for additional funding for the loan program authorized by this section; (4) estimated savings to the state and to patients by filling prescriptions through facilities receiving loans authorized by this section; and (5) such other information as the authority deems relevant to evaluating the success of the loan program in expanding access to the federal supply schedule rate for prescription drugs.

(e) In connection with the making and administration of loans pursuant to this section, the authority shall have and may exercise such powers as are necessary or appropriate to carry out the purposes of this section, including the same powers expressly granted to the authority in section 10a-180 of the general statutes, with respect to loans to health care institutions generally.

(f) No loan may be made pursuant to this section after June 30, 2008, and any moneys then remaining in, or thereafter received to the credit of, the account established in subsection (b) of this section may be withdrawn by the authority from such account and used for other purposes of the authority, subject to specific restrictions governing any contribution to such account pursuant to subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of this section.

(g) The authority shall adopt written procedures, in accordance with section 1-121 of the general statutes, to carry out the provisions of this section.

Sec. 2. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2003) (a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall assist any federally qualified health center that is applying for a loan pursuant to section 1 of this act by providing nonindividual identifying information concerning potential participants in the affordable pharmaceutical drug program.

(b) Not later than October 1, 2004, and annually thereafter, the Commissioner of Social Services shall submit a report, in accordance with section 11-4a of the general statutes, to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to public health, human services and appropriations and the budgets of state agencies, providing an estimate of the savings to the state if all federally qualified health centers were participating in an affordable pharmaceutical drug program, and the actual savings to the state from affordable pharmaceutical drug programs established by federally qualified health centers.

Approved June 26, 2003