STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1324

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

 

RE: H.B. No. 218

H.D. 2

S.D. 1

 

 

 

Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirty-Second State Legislature

Regular Session of 2023

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Health and Human Services, to which was referred H.B. No. 218, H.D. 2, entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO PRESCRIPTION DRUGS,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose and intent of this measure is to:

 

(1) Require certain pharmacies to:

 

(A) Provide accessible prescription drug label information to individuals who have difficulty seeing or reading prescription drug container labels; and

 

(B) Inform the public that prescription drug label information is available in alternate accessible formats for individuals who have difficulty seeing or reading prescription drug container labels; and

 

(2) Require the Board of Pharmacy to adopt certain rules necessary for the purposes of this Act by December 31, 2025.

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the National Federation of the Blind of Hawaii, National Organization of Parents of Blind Children, Hawaii Disability Rights Center, Hoopono, and eight individuals. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from the Hawaii Pharmacists Association. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Human Services and Board of Pharmacy.

 

Your Committee finds that regulation of prescription drug labels is largely a state, not a federal, responsibility. Your Committee further finds that existing state law requires dispensing pharmacies to label each prescription drug container with specific information identifying the drug and providing information necessary for health and safety. However, individuals who have vision impairments may experience difficulty in reading the labels, leading them to inadvertently take the wrong type or dosage of medication at the wrong time or under the wrong instructions, thereby endangering their health and safety. This measure addresses this concern by requiring pharmacies to provide prescription drug label information in alternate accessible formats for individuals who are unable to effectively read standard printed prescription labels.

 

Your Committee has amended this measure by:

 

(1) Requiring the Board of Pharmacy to adopt rules to carry out the purposes of this Act by December 31, 2024;

 

(2) Requiring the Board of Pharmacy to adopt rules in accordance with this measure applicable to hospital pharmacies and manufacturers of medication who provide their products directly to consumers;

 

(3) Amending section 1 to reflect its amended purpose; and

 

(4) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.

 

As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Health and Human Services that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 218, H.D. 2, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 218, H.D. 2, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Commerce and Consumer Protection.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Health and Human Services,

 

 

 

________________________________

JOY A. SAN BUENAVENTURA, Chair