The Arkansas Capitol was buzzing this week as legislators worked through several bills and House Bills 1026 and 1058 now dawn Governor Asa Hutchinson’s signature.
House Bill 1025 “authorizes the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program to monitor prescription abuse among Medicaid beneficiaries in the Arkansas Medicaid prescription drug program.” The bill would allow physicians, whether private practice or at hospitals, to view where and when the patient last acquired medications such as pain medicine.
Senator Missy Irvin suggested that some patients will “hop” from clinic to emergency room within hours of each other to receive pain medicine that they may attempt to sell. She also suggested that with the implementation of the monitoring system, it could assist in reducing prescription abuse.
House Bill 1025 was passed by the Senate Public Health Committee Wednesday and was unanimously passed by the Senate Friday.
House Bill 1035 again appeared in front of the House Public Health Committee Tuesday amending the addition of the Arkansas Department of Health into the bill. The bill “restricts use of SNAP benefits to the purchase of foods with sufficient nutritional value.”
Once again, the bill received questions from audience members who voiced concerns that the bill would not do what it is intended. They believed that obesity is not directly associated with the SNAP program and recommended additional health education throughout the state.
House Bill 1035 was motioned through the House Public Health Committee once again Tuesday, with the adoption of Amendment 3.