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ACR Supports Patients' Access to Treatments Act of 2013

Joins coalition in support of reintroduction of legislation to limit cost-sharing for specialty tier meds

TUESDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) -- The American College of Rheumatology (ACR) has joined the Coalition for Accessible Treatments, in support of the Patients' Access to Treatments Act of 2013, which will reduce the out-of-pocket expenses for medications, including biologics.

Noting that some health insurance companies are placing biologics in "specialty tiers," which require patients to pay 20 to 50 percent of medication costs, Rep. David B. McKinley (R-WV) and Rep. Lois Capps (D-Calif.) have reintroduced legislation to limit cost-sharing requirements for medications placed in these tiers, increasing accessibility by decreasing excessive out-of-pocket expenses.

The Patients' Access to Treatments Act of 2013 is supported by the Coalition for Accessible Treatments, which is encouraging patients and physicians to ask lawmakers to support and cosponsor the act. The American College of Rheumatology is one of 18 member organizations that have joined the coalition.

"Biologics are essential tools used to fight the progression of rheumatic disease and prevent disability," Audrey Uknis, M.D., president of the American College of Rheumatology, said in a statement. "The ACR is encouraged that Reps. McKinley and Capps have reintroduced this important bill and continue to advocate that patients with chronic illnesses should have access to live-saving treatments."

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