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Issue Background

Epilepsy Foundation Leads Efforts to Ensure Access to Treatments During COVID-19 Pandemic

The Foundation applauds government efforts so far in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As Congress continues working on several economic stimulus packages, the Foundation is leading efforts to ensure people of all ages have access to essential and oftentimes life-saving treatments and supplies for serious and chronic conditions in the next legislative package. 

On March 25, the Foundation sent a letter signed by over 200 patient and disability community organizations urging Congress and the Administration to take action to address the following issues:

  • Require all payers to allow for provision of an emergency supply of medications and supplies by relaxing restrictions on timing of refills and amounts, to at least the CDC-recommended extra 30-day supply and up to a 90-day supply to reduce returns to the pharmacy;
  • Ensure that these protections extend to medications that are controlled substances and injectables;
  • Require all payers to waive prior authorization and utilization management requirements;
  • Require flexibility regarding use of mail order pharmacies, including out of state mail order pharmacies and other home delivery methods;
  • Require payers to relax requirements for in-person visits for refills, including allowing visits through telehealth;
  • Require all payers to waive or allow for delayed payment of out-of-pocket costs for emergency supplies; and 
  • Increase FDA monitoring and reporting of shortages, especially existing medications approved to treat chronic conditions that may be used to treat COVID-19. 

Additionally, in response to escalating efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 by social distancing, the Foundation signed on to an open letter urging governors and legislative leaders to take necessary actions to ensure continued safe access to medical cannabis and cannabidiol (CBD) in a way that is consistent with public health. 

Stay up to date by reading the Foundation’s FAQ on COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and Epilepsy, which will be updated as information becomes available.  

Click here to learn more about the Foundation's advocacy efforts on COVID-19.