Florida’s independent pharmacy coalition, Small business Pharmacies Aligned for Reform (SPAR), recently announced their annual Legislative Recognition Awards for 2020. The awards are in honor of state legislators who have been instrumental in advocating for Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) reform that protects local pharmacies and their patients. “The legislators we recognize with these awards are those who not only sponsored or helped to promote legislation in support of our state’s neighborhood pharmacies….” said SPAR advisor Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, “…these are legislators that have taken a principled stand to actively fight to protect small business neighborhood pharmacies by pushing for transparency and free-market competition which will lower prescription drug prices for patients in Florida.

“The legislators honored by SPAR come from both major political parties and are an example of what can be accomplished when state government advocates for the good of their districts instead of putting political party lines before the needs of their constituency. “As an organization we wanted to ensure these legislators were recognized publicly for their efforts,” said Naples-based independentpharmacy owner and SPAR President Alex Herwig. “They didn’t just give lip service to the issues and they weren’t intimidated by the multi-billion dollar PBM industry. They made an effort to educate themselves about a very complex problem. Many even took time to visit local pharmacies and speak directly with the pharmacists and their staff. The Legislators we honored are a positive example of elected officials trying to solve a significant problem that impacts their constituents — ever increasing prescription drug prices.” The 2020 SPAR Legislative Recognition Awards are as follows:

Senator of the Year: Sen. Gayle Harrell (R -District 83)

Representative of the Year: Rep. Jackie Toledo (R -District 60)

Senate Champion of the Year: Sen. Tom Wright (R -District 14)

House Champion of the Year: Rep. Brad Drake (R -District 5)

Senate SPAR Stars: Sen. Dennis Baxley (R -District 12), Sen. Doug Broxson (R -District 1), Sen. Jose Javier Rodriguez (D -District 37), Sen. Debbie Mayfield (R -District 17), Sen. Keith Perry (R -District 8), and Sen. Tom Lee (R -District 8)

House SPAR Stars: Rep. Anna Eskamani (D -District 47), Rep. Randy Fine (R -District 53), Rep. Joe Geller (D -District 100), Rep. Anthony Sabatini (R -District 32), and Rep. Tyler Sirois (R -District 51)

Small business Pharmacies Aligned for Reform (SPAR) is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving patient access to local pharmacy and keeping drug costs affordable by putting a stop to PBM anti-competitive practices and rampant abuses. For more information, visit SPARFl.com.

Small business Pharmacies Aligned for Reform (SPAR) is a group of neighborhood pharmacists and other advocates who care about preserving patient access.