"Step Therapy" Bill Makes its Way Through the Ohio Statehouse

Dec 5, 2018

Senators have unanimously passed a bipartisan bill that would change the process by which insurance companies deny treatments and drugs until other options are tried first.

The bill doesn’t ban so-called step therapy, but would allow for exemptions such as if medication causes an allergy or if the patient has already tried the treatment and it didn’t work. Ohio is one of 10 states considering step therapy changes.

Republican Sen. Peggy Lehner of Kettering said it’s been a long road for this bill. It was introduced in February of last year.

“There are 18 other states that have passed similar patient protections, including Indiana, Kentucky and West Virginia – none of which have resulted in any significant financial impact,” she said.

A coalition of more than 60 patient advocates pushed for the bill, which was opposed by health plans – which say step therapy ensures safer and more cost effective treatments are the first option.