- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The House on Tuesday approved a ban on “gag clauses” that prevent pharmacists from telling customers they can save money in some cases by paying cash for their prescriptions, instead of relying on their insurance and making the co-payment.

Its passage under fast-track rules followed approval in the Senate, where the bill got overwhelming support following a tweet of encouragement from President Trump.

“I hope this bill moves quickly to the president’s desk,” said Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Missouri Democrat facing re-election.

She cosponsored the Senate measure with Sen. Susan Collins, Maine Republican, who said too many Americans were overpaying for their drugs because their pharmacists could only divulge the cheaper option if the customer specifically asked about it.

Ms. Collins drafted her bill after she watched a couple walk out of a Bangor, Maine, pharmacy without their medication because their copay was too expensive. Home-state pharmacists also prodded her to act.

“When this bill becomes law, it will make a real difference in the lives of patients across the country,” said Rep. Michael Burgess, Texas Republican.

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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