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Press Release

Relief Is Ordered For Those Displaced By Hurricanes On Prescription Medications
Friday, September 10, 2004
Insurance Commissioner Insurers to OK Payment for Medication Refills

Contact: Bob Lotane
850/ 528-2868

Tallahassee – Commissioner of Insurance Regulation for the state of Florida, Kevin McCarty, has ordered the state's health insurance companies and Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO) to temporarily suspend their regulations regarding prescription refills. McCarty's order, issued today, is in response to some of the problems people have encountered resulting from the back-to-back hurricanes Florida has suffered, in addition to the threat posed by Hurricane Ivan.

McCarty said, "It has come to our attention that the usual 30 day limits on refills can pose problems for Floridians who have had to flee their homes and possibly their communities." "People who are displaced from their homes absolutely should not have to worry about their medication," said McCarty. "I am sure the industry will see the need for this measure because of the unique dangers this state has endured and continues to face."

The order requires health insurance companies and HMO's to waive restrictions on refills to enable insureds to fill prescriptions in advance. It also authorizes payments to pharmacies for at least a thirty-day supply of medication regardless of the date the prescription had last been refilled. The order is to be effective through November 30, 2004 and is for the entire state of Florida.