Aimed Alliance and Others Ask Congress To Improve Access To Care During Public Health Emergency

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On June 3, 2020, Aimed Alliance and 18 other patient advocacy groups sent a letter to Congress, asking it to temporarily prohibit prior authorization and step therapy requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior authorization is a health insurance policy in which health care practitioners must obtain permission from the health plan before prescribing or administering treatments and medical services. Step therapy is a policy in which the health plan requires patients to try and fail on the plan’s preferred medications before patients can access the one that their health care provider prescribed. Both prior authorization and step therapy delay access to medically necessary, patient-centered care. The COVID-19 public health emergency has further exacerbated those delays. Many physicians’ offices and clinics have stopped in-person appointments and furloughed administrative staff, making it difficult to complete the paperwork required for prior authorization approvals and step therapy exception requests. As such, we called on Congress to suspend these practices for the duration of the public health emergency. Read our letter here.

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