CHPA Statement on Supreme Court’s Healthcare Law Decision

Association to continue efforts to restore over-the-counter medicines under FSAs

Washington, D.C. (June 28, 2012)—Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) President and CEO Scott M. Melville released the following statement today in response to the Supreme Court of the United States’ ruling on the challenge to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

“Today’s ruling from the Supreme Court is of great importance to the future of our nation’s healthcare system, and CHPA – like other associations who work to enhance healthcare for Americans – has awaited the court’s decision with much anticipation.  

"While CHPA did not take a position on the Supreme Court case or on passage of the original PPACA bill, we did object to the law’s removal of OTC medicines from flexible spending arrangement (FSA) eligibility.  As that policy remains, we will continue to work with Congress to repeal this provision.   This provision has placed an unnecessary burden on individuals, families and the healthcare system at large by leaving Americans who use FSAs with 3 options:  to seek an unnecessary doctor’s appointment to get a prescription to qualify for reimbursement; to purchase the OTC medicine out of their own pockets, which will raise the cost of the product between 10-35 percent; or to go without treatment. Americans who utilize health savings accounts and flexible spending arrangements should not be denied the ability to use their savings dollars to purchase the medicines that millions rely on every day. Before the PPACA provision took effect in January 2011, nearly 10 million Americans used their FSAs to purchase OTC medicines.

"OTC medicines are a vital part of our nation’s healthcare system and often serve as a first line of treatment for many common, self-manageable conditions like colds, allergies, heartburn and headaches.  We applaud the House of Representatives for recognizing the value of these medicines to families, individuals and the healthcare system by passing legislation earlier this month that included a fix to the FSA provision.  We call on the Senate to take the next step toward securing this repeal and restoring healthcare options to Americans.”

Contact:  Jenni Terry, 202.429.9260 

CHPA is the 131-year-old-trade association representing U.S. manufacturers and distributors of over-the-counter medicines and dietary supplements.