The Kansas Legislature finished the first half of the 2023 legislative session, also known as Turnaround Day, on Feb. 24. This day is the point in the session at which most bills from each chamber must have been voted on and approved by their originating chamber to continue in the process. There are also exempt bills, that continue due to the nature of them having been touched by an exempt committee at some point in the process.
I am glad to report that HB 2263, the pharmacy technician vaccine administration bill, was heard on the House floor on Feb. 22 and was passed by the full body on Feb. 23 by a vote of 119-3. This bill now goes to the Senate, where it has been assigned to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee. We are working with the committee chair to ensure we get HB 2263 on their agenda in the next few weeks. For those that have contacted their legislators, thank you. We heard several reports of pharmacy folks contacting House members leading up to the vote, and that contact was integral in ensuring the bill went through with such overwhelming support.
In the section below, we have updated where each bill we are tracking is in the process. Most importantly, we have identified the bills that are considered "dead" for the rest of session, those that passed and where they went, and those that have been blessed, which allows them to continue to be worked in their chamber of origin through the end of the session.
Bills We are Championing –
HB 2263 - would allow pharmacy technicians to continue to administer vaccinations after the expiration of the COVID-related Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) provisions. As part of the PREP Act all adequately trained and supervised pharmacy technicians could administer most vaccinations. The bill will add pharmacy technicians to the list of those that can administer vaccinations under Kansas law. The bill was amended to clarify that only those technicians over 18 could administer vaccines. The House Health and Human Services Committee (HHHS) moved the bill out favorably for passage. HB 2263 was heard in the House on 02/22, voted on 2/23, and passed by a vote of 119-3. Now the bill has been assigned to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee (SPHW) for work in the Senate.
Bills We are/were Watching –
SB5 - would amend the Kansas Telemedicine Act (Act) to clarify that “abortion procedure” includes the prescribing of drugs intended to induce an abortion. Current provisions state that nothing in the Act shall be construed to authorize the delivery of an abortion procedure via telemedicine. The bill would also prohibit those sections of the Act related to abortion from being altered or suspended during any state of disaster emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to KSA 48-924. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill was heard by committee on February 15, 2023, and was moved out favorably for passage on February 21. Heard by the full Senate on February 22, voted on 02/23, passed by vote of 27-12. Now the bill has been assigned to HHHS for work in the House.
SB6 – would restrict the authority of the secretary of health and environment and local health officers to prevent the introduction and spread of infectious or contagious diseases, repealing the authority of the secretary to quarantine individuals and impose associated penalties. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill was heard by committee on February 13, 2023, and was moved out favorably for passage on February 21. Heard by the full Senate on February 22, voted on 02/23, passed by vote of 22-18. Now the bill has been assigned to the HHHS for work in the House.
SB12 - would create the Kansas Child Mutilation Prevention Act and would define the crime of unlawful gender reassignment service. The bill lists specific acts that would be considered knowingly performing, or causing to be performed, unlawful gender reassignment service upon a person under 21 years of age to attempt to change or affirm the person’s perception of the person’s sex if that perception is inconsistent with the person’s sex. SB 12 categorizes unlawful gender reassignment service as a severity-level four, person felony. The bill would allow for exceptions in certain cases where a person was born with a medically verifiable disorder of sex development. The bill would also add violation of the Kansas Child Mutilation Prevention Act to the definition of “unprofessional conduct” under KSA 65-2837, as related to licensure under the Kansas Healing Arts Act. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill is dead for this session.
SB20 - would expand KSA 44-663 related to employer COVID-19 vaccine requirements to cover any vaccine requirement imposed by an employer. This would include requiring an employee to receive a vaccine, requiring an employee to provide documentation certifying receipt of a vaccine, or enforcement of those requirements by the federal government or any other entity. The bill would define “vaccine” as an immunization, vaccination, injection, or series thereof that is administered to stimulate immunity against a particular disease. The definition of “employee” would also be amended to include students in high school and postsecondary educational institutions who interact with patients and deliver care at healthcare facilities under the supervision of licensed individuals. In addition, the bill would amend provisions related to vaccine requirements for maternity centers, childcare facilities, and schools by requiring exemptions for sincerely held religious beliefs without inquiry into the sincerity of the request. Religious beliefs would include, but not be limited to, theistic and non-theistic moral and ethical beliefs as to what is right and wrong that are sincerely held with the strength of traditional religious views. The bill would also require the plaintiff statutory damages of $25,000 in actions against childcare facilities or schools for violations of the religious belief exemption. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill was pulled from SPHW , referred to Senate Ways and Means Committee, and then referred back to SPHW. Bill is now considered a blessed bill.
SB135 – would create the medical cannabis regulation act to regulate the cultivation, processing, distribution, sale, and use of medical cannabis. We are still reading through this bill to determine its effect on pharmacy. Bill referred to Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee. Currently, no action scheduled. Bill is blessed.
SB 148 (HB 2283 is the same bill, introduced in the House. House bill was referred to House Health and Human Services Committee. Bill was heard in committee on February 20) – would create several new requirements concerning prior authorizations by utilization review entities. The section that most directly impacts pharmacy is section 2 of the bill which requires a utilization review entity to accept and respond to prior authorization requests under a pharmacy benefit through a secure electronic transmission using the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs script standard for electronic prior authorization transactions. The bill goes on to define "secure electronic transmission" as not including facsimiles, proprietary payer portals, electronic forms, or any other technology that is not directly integrated with a physician's electronic health record or electronic prescribing system. The bill would further require a utilization review entity to accept and respond to prior authorization requests for healthcare services using a secure electronic portal at no cost to a healthcare provider and requires a utilization review entity not to require a healthcare provider to use a specified secure electronic portal. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill is dead for this session.
SB 171 – would create the veterans first medical cannabis act to regulate the cultivation, distribution, sale, possession, and use of medical cannabis. Bill referred to Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee. Currently, no action scheduled. Bill is exempt.
SB 173 - would permit the purchase of ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine medications in tablet form over the counter and without a prescription. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill is dead for this session.
SB 225 – would expand Medicaid to those with incomes below 138% of the federal poverty level. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill was introduced by Senate Ways and Means Committee, so bill is considered exempt.
SB 233 - would create the Kansas Child Mutilation Prevention Act (Act). The bill would allow an individual who had gender reassignment service performed as a child to bring a civil cause of action under the Act against the physician who performed such service. The bill would establish the statute of limitations for such cause of action, the medically verifiable disorders of sex development to which the Act would not apply, the relief that could be sought, and the time frame to which the Act would apply. The provisions of the Act would not apply if the child was born with a medically verifiable disorder of sex development, as defined in the bill. The bill also would require the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts (Board) to revoke the license of a physician who performed a childhood gender reassignment service. Bill referred to Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee. Bill was heard by committee on February 14, 2023, and was moved out favorably for passage on February 20. On Senate Calendar for consideration on February 22. Heard by the full Senate on February 22, voted on 02/23, passed by vote of 26-11. Now the bill has been assigned to the HHHS for work in the House.
SB 235 – would expand limitations to third-party access to provider network contracts and discounts unless certain criteria are met and prohibitions on payment method restrictions and limitations on certain transaction fees from dental services to all healthcare services. Bill referred to SPHW. Bill is dead for this session.
SB 236 – would require drug manufacturers to provide pricing under the federal 340B drug pricing program to pharmacies that enter into contractual agreements with entities covered under the 340B program and prohibiting pharmacy benefits managers from denying patients the freedom to use the pharmacy and healthcare provider of such patient's choice. Bill referred to Senate Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee. Bill is dead for this session.
HB 2007 - would prohibit the Secretary of Health and Environment from requiring a COVID-19 vaccine for any child cared for in a childcare facility or any student as defined in KSA 72-6262. COVID-19 vaccine would be defined as an immunization, vaccination, or injection against disease caused by the novel coronavirus, defined as SARS-CoV-2 or disease caused by a variant of the virus. Bill referred to HHHS. Bill is dead for this session.
HB 2099 – would discontinue certain exemptions from the pharmacy benefits manager licensure act for third party administrators. Bill referred to House Insurance Committee. Bill is dead for this session.
HB 2202 - would exempt over-the-counter drugs from the state sales tax. Bill referred to House Tax Committee. Currently, no action scheduled. Bill is exempt.
HB 2239 - would remove the requirement for continuing education by a person, board, commission, or similar body that determines the qualifications of individuals for licensure, certification, or registration in Kansas if the licensee self-certifies that the licensee has worked at least 1,000 hours in the prior year in the lawful profession. Bill referred to House Welfare Reform Committee. Bill is dead for this session.
HB 2347 – would require any group health insurance policy, medical service plan, contract, hospital service corporation contract, hospital, and medical service corporation contract, fraternal benefit society, or health maintenance organization that provides coverage for accident and health services to cover insulin, devices, and related services in the following manner.
- For a 30-day supply, patient costs would be capped at $35 for insulin and $100 for devices
- Must cover at least one type of prescription insulin drug in each of these categories; rapid acting, ultra rapid acting, short acting, intermediate acting, long acting, pre-mixed, pre-mixed GLP-1 RA product, and concentrated human regular insulin.
- Have to pay for diabetes self-management education (DSME) provided by a DSME-accredited healthcare provider.
The bill also establishes the Insulin Affordability Program for Kansans without healthcare coverage. Finally, HB 2347 would allow pharmacies to provide individuals with one 30-day emergency insulin prescription in a 12-month period under certain conditions. Bill referred to House Welfare Reform Committee. Bill is dead for this session.
HB 2367 – would create the adult-use cannabis regulation act to regulate the cultivation, manufacturing, possession, and sale of cannabis in this state. This is a recreational cannabis law. Bill referred to House Federal and State Affairs Committee, Currently, no action scheduled. Bill is exempt.
HB 2390 - would establish the Kansas Overdose Fatality Review Board (Board) to review information and data related to drug overdose fatalities in Kansas and to make recommendations regarding evidence-based strategies to prevent or mitigate the consequences of drug overdose. The bill would require the Board to be established before January 1, 2025. The bill would also exempt any materials used or intended for use to test a substance for the presence of fentanyl, a fentanyl analog, ketamine, or gamma hydroxybutyric acid from the definition of “drug paraphernalia.” In addition, the bill would remove the definition of “possession” from the statute regarding crimes involving controlled substances. The bill would also amend a statute regarding emergency opioid antagonists to require, rather than authorize, a pharmacist furnishing an emergency opioid antagonist to provide consultation to the person to whom the emergency opioid antagonist is furnished. Bill referred to HHHS. Bill was heard by committee on February 15, 2023, and was moved out favorably for passage on February 17. Bill was heard and voted on by the House on 2/23 and passed 121-0. The bill has been assigned to the SPHW for Senate consideration.
HB 2415 - would the KanCare Bridge to a Healthy Kansas Program to expand Medicaid to those Kansans making 138% or less of the federal poverty level. Bill referred to the House Appropriations Committee. No action is scheduled on the bill.
If you have any questions or any thoughts you would like us to consider in our advocacy on these or other issues; please reach out to Aaron Dunkel at email@example.com.