Gov. Kevin Stitt has given his approval to legislation ensuring citizens can get emergency refills on life-saving prescriptions.  Sen. Carri Hicks, D-Oklahoma City, is the principal author of Senate Bill 1019. The House principal author is Rep. T.J. Marti, R-Broken Arrow.

Hicks said the legislation sets out the guidelines for pharmacists to prescribe emergency refills of specific kinds of medication if the patient’s doctor cannot be reached after a prescription has expired.

“There are certain chronic medical conditions that can quickly become extremely dangerous without prescription medication.  As the mother of a child with Type 1 Diabetes, it’s something I understand all too well,” Hicks said. “Ensuring emergency access to a drug like insulin can save lives.” 

Hicks said beyond helping people with diabetes, the measure would also allow emergency refills for medications for other chronic health conditions including seizures, asthma and heart conditions. The bill does not apply to narcotics.

Under SB 1019, a pharmacist could dispense an emergency supply of the prescription under specific circumstances.

The pharmacy must have a record of the prescription for the drug prescribed in the name of the patient requesting it. 

If the prescription doesn’t provide for a refill or it has expired and the pharmacist is unable to obtain authorization for a refill. 

The pharmacist determines the drug is essential to sustain the life of the patient or necessary for the continued therapy for a chronic condition.

“I commend Senator Hicks for her work on and passion for SB1019,” Marti said. “From a pharmacist standpoint, this legislation is long overdue. SB1019 will save lives in Oklahoma, and that alone makes the hard work involved in passing this great legislation worth it.”

The new law will take effect November 1, 2019.