New Ohio law expands pharmacists’ care

Congratulations to our pharmacist colleagues in Ohio! Under a new bill that was recently signed into law, Ohio pharmacists will now have more responsibility and fewer restrictions in collaborative practice.

Thanks to the tireless efforts of the Ohio Pharmacists Association and its members, along with support from Ohio state Rep. Stephen Huffman (R–District 80), MD, and joint sponsor Ohio state Rep. Nathan Manning (R–District 55), HB 188 provides new consult agreement provisions that allow Ohio pharmacists to order blood and urine tests, analyze the results of those tests, and modify a patient’s drug therapy regimen. The law also allows pharmacists to order medication refills in a small amount for patients with life-threatening illnesses when a physician can’t be reached. It will also streamline consult agreement paperwork so that multiple pharmacists can have a collaborative agreement with multiple physicians to oversee medications for multiple patients.

Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, a presidential candidate, signed HB 188 into law on December 22, 2015. The law will go into effect in the spring of 2016.

This is a huge win for pharmacists in Ohio and is an excellent example of how collaboration among pharmacists, physicians, patients, and legislators can expand our scope of practice. But the work in Ohio is not over. We’re developing a story for the March 2016 issue of Pharmacy Today about what pharmacists in Ohio have to do to take advantage of the new law.

I’m so proud of my old friend Ernie Boyd, PharmD (Hon), CAE, Executive Director of the Ohio Pharmacists Association, and Ohio pharmacists. Way to go, Ohio!

And in breaking news, I just got a positive report from Jon Roth, CAE, CEO of the California Pharmacists Association, which I’ll discuss in my next blog. The message is that while lots of momentum is being built on Capitol Hill by APhA and our colleague organizations, our affiliated state pharmacy associations are tirelessly working state houses AND health plans in their states to help decision makers see the value of getting us in the game.

If you’re not a member of APhA or your state pharmacy association, now is the time to join. We’re working hard for you! We make it easy at