Biosimilars Legislation (SB 671) Advances through State Assembly Committee

July 8, 2015

A top priority for CLSA, SB 671 updates the Pharmacy Practices Act to establish the procedures and conditions for when a pharmacist may substitute interchangeable biosimilar products that are approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

The inclusion of biosimilars in the Act mirrors California’s patient protections for generic pill substitution that ensure patients are afforded the opportunity to consult with their doctor and pharmacist to make informed decisions on their healthcare choices, including substituting less costly medicines when appropriate.

All of the drug and biotechnology companies, except Mylan are now on board and part of the coalition effort to advance SB 671. In addition, a recent agreement reached with Walgreens, CVS, California Retailers Association (CRA) and California Pharmacists Association (CphA) has led these groups to drop their opposition to the bill. The only remaining opposition is the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA), Mylan and the health plans.

SB 671 passed out of the Assembly Business and Professions Committee on July 7.