Mississippi Medicaid program has implemented rules limiting
the number of prescription drugs for participants to just
five per month, the limit is being lifted for HIV
patients, The [Jackson, Miss.] Clarion-Ledger
reports. The new drug policy limits Medicaid enrollees
to just two brand-name drugs and three generic
medications per month. But AIDS advocates challenged that
policy, noting that HIV patients need at least three
brand-name antiretroviral drugs to successfully treat
the disease and often other medications to fight the
side effects of the antiretroviral drugs or to treat other
attorney general Harold Pizzetta says the prescription
limit for HIV patients will revert back to the old policy of
allowing up to seven drugs per month--five of
any type and two that require prior authorization.
limit also is being challenged in federal court by
low-income Mississippi residents with other diseases, who
claim they are unable to get the drugs they need. A
federal court heard testimony this week in a case
brought by eight plaintiffs challenging the drug limit.
The judge in the case is expected to rule within two weeks
on placing a permanent injunction against the
state's Medicaid prescription limit.
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