Skelos Announces Passage Of Legislation In Both Houses Of State Legislature Requiring Prescription Drug Prices To Be Posted Online

Dean G. Skelos

June 24, 2005

New York State Senate Deputy Majority Leader Dean G. Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) today announced that both houses of the State Legislature have passed legislation requiring prescription drug prices to be posted online to give consumers easy access to the drug price list, allowing them to electronically comparison shop for prescription drugs on the Internet and help senior citizens save money.

"There are tens of thousands of New Yorkers who do not have prescription drug coverage and are forced to pay the highest price for their medications," said Senator Skelos. "This online prescription drug price list, which would be the first of its kind in the entire nation, would benefit New Yorkers who are not in good health or simply do not have the time to go into every pharmacy in their community and request a drug price list. Ultimately, this measure will result in more competition, lower prices, and savings for seniors."

"New Yorkers with no prescription drug coverage unfortunately have to pay the highest prices at the pharmacy counter," said Lois Aronstein, AARP New York State Director. "This legislation will help consumers find the best prices on their prescription drugs at a nearby pharmacy by allowing them to review and compare prices on the Internet."

Under current law, pharmacies in New York are required to produce an updated weekly prescription drug price list and make copies available to consumers who come into the pharmacy and request the list in person.

This legislation would require pharmacies to provide the same list electronically each week to the Department of Health, who will make the prices available on their web site. Signs would be posted in pharmacies notifying consumers that the price list is online and the address of the web site. The web site will be searchable by zip code and other factors. By posting these prices on the internet, it will further help consumers to locate nearby pharmacies and allow them to comparison shop from the comfort of their home or office.

The bill must now be signed into law by the Governor.