New Treatments Provide Hope for Respiratory Patients

 Published: May 19, 2021

By: Anne Marie Hummel



New highly anticipated treatments are in the pipeline for respiratory patients and could soon be up for approval before the Food and Drug Administration as reported in a recent blog post from the Alliance for Patient Access titled “Will Insurers Come through for Respiratory Patients?” The underlying question on most people’s minds, however, is what type of barriers will patients face in getting their insurers to pay for the new treatments once they are approved?

The Alliance for Patient Access is a national network of physicians dedicated to ensuring patient access to approved therapies and appropriate clinical care. The AARC is a member of the Alliance’s Respiratory Therapy Access Working Group which several years ago published a White Paper on “Improving Access to Respiratory Care”  which details the most pressing access barriers facing patients suffering from respiratory health conditions together with related proposed solutions.

The blog highlights delay tactics by insurers commonly referred to as “new-to-market exclusions.” This is a situation in which patients are told they must wait a few months or until the medications can be added to the insurers’ approved list. It is reported that this tactic has increased 160 percent between 2014 and 2018. Prior authorization is another tactic that can result in delays due to onerous paperwork requirements needed to gain coverage. This is a disturbing trend that could impact those with chronic respiratory disease from getting the types of medications that can improve their health and quality of life.

We encourage our members to read the blog to learn more about the issue.

Email with questions or comments, we’d love to hear from you.

Anne Marie Hummel

Anne Marie Hummel is the AARC’s Associate Executive Director for Advocacy and Government Affairs where she brings her years of regulatory experience in the Federal Government to overseeing federal and state legislative and regulatory policies that impact the respiratory care profession. Check out AARC’s Advocacy menu on our website to learn more. Outside of work, Anne Marie loves interior design, tackling 1000-piece puzzles and spending time with her granddaughter.

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