Tennessee Pharmacists Association
Executive Update

One of my favorite game maxims from General Robert Neyland is, “If at first the game – or the breaks – go against you, don’t let up… put on more steam.” We’re a few weeks into the Micah Costcollege football season, which means we’re also just a few weeks away from the 2016 election. Sometimes it can seem like the breaks are going against pharmacy, so now is the time for all of our pharmacy advocates to “put on more steam” and make the game-winning play! We all need to reach out to our elected US Representative and US Senators and actively advocate for several important pharmacy-related legislative issues. Many of our members have already taken advantage of opportunities to meet with their elected officials, but TPA cannot win without your advocacy and help.

Here are four key federal legislative initiatives that TPA and our national pharmacists associations are specifically asking you to engage with your US Representatives and US Senators on TODAY:

1. Pharmacists as Providers Legislation

2. Any Willing Pharmacy Legislation

3. Direct and Indirect Remuneration (DIR) Legislation 

4. MAC Transparency Legislation

TPA has made it easier than ever to engage through the TPA website, using the automated Tennessee Pharmacists Legislative Action Network (T-PLAN) service!

Take Action Now!

How YOU Can Engage Through T-PLAN:

  1. Visit the Tennessee Pharmacists Legislative Action Network (T-PLAN) page on the TPA website.
  2. Click on the advocacy campaign you would like to contact your US Representative and US Senators about.
  3. The system will automatically create an email; you can customize it and add your signature.
  4. Enter your name, home address, zip code and other pertinent information at the bottom of the page. The system will automatically identify your own personal legislators and send them either a “Please Support” or “Thank You For Your Support” email, depending on whether or not they are already sponsoring the legislation.
  5. Click SEND.

Our elected officials have a great amount of respect for pharmacists and pharmacy professionals. They also know the value of the care and services you provide to patients and your communities. Building relationships with them is a great way to show them how these pharmacy issues directly affect you and your patients. It is extremely vital that we work to strengthen these key relationships we have with our elected officials, not just through one-time contacts, but year-round. With all the issues facing our country and our health care system, being active at the national level is extremely critical right now. Our national associations are working hard to support meaningful legislation and effect changes that will improve patient care and advance pharmacy practice, so we all need to help them out by engaging with our US legislators and educating them about these important issues!

Put On More Steam!If you have questions about the legislation above, feel free to reach out to me or a member of our TPA staff, and we would be happy to help out! If you want to learn more about how you can support TPA through advocacy, please visit the TPA Legislative Advocacy Center, and also consider becoming a contributor to the Tennessee Pharmacists Political Action Committee (PharmPAC).

Pharmacy is facing some really tough challenges right now, but we are also in a great position with some great opportunities on the horizon. It’s now up to all of us to call the winning play!

Micah Cost, PharmD, MS