Petition Update

APhA to HHS: Include MTM in essential health benefits

Sandra Leal, PharmD, MPH, FAPhA, CDE
Tucson, AZ

Feb 16, 2012 — APhA to HHS: Include MTM in essential health benefits

Association cites Surgeon General’s endorsement of USPHS report.

In January 31 comments to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on essential health benefits, APhA encouraged HHS to direct the states to include pharmacists’ clinical services such as medication therapy management (MTM) in its upcoming proposed rule.

“We believe that by making pharmacists’ clinical services more widely available through [essential health benefits], patients will benefit greatly through these [preventive] services, physicians and other prescribers will have improved access to collaborative work with pharmacists as part of the health care team, and [payers] will experience cost savings,” APhA wrote.

HHS issued a bulletin December 16 that announced its intended approach to rulemaking. According to the bulletin, states will define their own essential benefits, based on an already existing “benchmark” plan within each state, during a t