OLR Bill Analysis

sSB 28 (File 329, as amended by Senate "A")*

AN ACT CONCERNING MANUFACTURER NAMES AND MEDWATCH REPORTING INFORMATION ON GENERIC DRUG CONTAINERS, THE ELECTRONIC PRESCRIPTION DRUG MONITORING PROGRAM AND PHARMACIST CHANGES TO PRESCRIPTION DRUGS DISPENSED TO CERTAIN PATIENTS.

SUMMARY:

This bill expands the information pharmacists must provide with a generic name prescription drug.

For drugs sold only by generic name, the bill requires pharmacists to include the (1) manufacturer's name and (2) website and toll-free telephone number for MedWatch, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's drug safety and reporting program. This information may be placed on the prescription container's label, other similar packaging that contains the prescription, or a receipt.

If a pharmacist substitutes a generic name drug for a brand name drug, the bill requires the pharmacist to include on the prescription container's label the name of the (1) generic drug in the container and (2) brand name drug prescribed.

The law already requires pharmacists to put, on all prescription drug labels, (1) the quantity of the prescribed drug, (2) an expiration date, and (3) any other information required by law.

By law, a “generic name” is the chemical name or formula or the established name given by the United States Pharmacopoeia, official Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States, or official National Formulary. A “brand name” is the name a manufacturer puts on a drug or pharmaceutical or on its container, label, or wrapping when it is packaged (CGS 20-14a).

*Senate Amendment “A” (1) adds the information pharmacists must give when substituting a generic name for a brand name drug and (2) allows the generic drug manufacturer's name and Medwatch information to be put on similar packaging or a receipt. It also removes provisions barring (1) the Department of Consumer Protection from licensing practitioners who fail to register with the agency or for access to the electronic prescription drug monitoring program and (2) pharmacists from changing prescribed drugs for certain patients with complex, chronic, or rare medical conditions.

EFFECTIVE DATE: January 1, 2016

BACKGROUND

Generic Drug Substitution

By law, pharmacists are generally allowed to substitute a generic drug for a prescribed drug if it is of the same strength, quantity, dose, and dosage form as the prescribed drug and the pharmacist believes it is therapeutically equivalent (CGS 20-619).

COMMITTEE ACTION

General Law Committee

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

18

Nay

0

(03/12/2015)

Public Health Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

28

Nay

0

(04/13/2015)