June 14, 2011--The Epilepsy Foundation of Connecticut announced that after a 4-year legislative effort, the Patient Prescription Protection Act has finally passed the legislature and was signed into law today by Connecticut Governor Dannell Malloy.
The bill is designed to protect people with epilepsy from having their medication switched without their consent. It requires pharmacists to notify and receive the consent of the patient and their physician before filling a prescription using a new drug manufacturer or distributor of the prescribed drug.
Epilepsy Foundation Executive Vice President Sandy Finucane said, "Informed consent is the critical issue here. People who are going from one epilepsy drug to another need to know in advance and be monitored by a physician during the change. Most do fine, but for some it's a matter of life and death."
The Connecticut affiliate expressed gratitude to the many advocates who have worked to support the bill over the past 4 years--writing letters, attending hearings and making phone calls. This session, Representatives Boukus, Ritter and Walker, as well as Senators Harp and Gerratana were strong supporters. In addition, former Senator Handley joined supporters of this legislation at the Public Health Committee hearing.
For the more than 60,000 people in Connecticut with epilepsy who rely on medication for controlling and/or reducing their seizures, this legislation is long overdue. Now people with epilepsy can be assured of a consistent supply of their medication and can live their lives without the fear of unexpected seizures due to a switch in their medication.