HDA Applauds Senate Passage of Maryland Legislation Designed To Clarify Role of Critical Pharmacy Partners

April 04, 2022

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA) issued the following statement today from President and CEO Chester “Chip” Davis, Jr., regarding the passage of SB 823 by the Maryland Senate.

“HDA applauds the Maryland legislature for passing SB 823 this week, an essential technical correction bill. This legislation rightly clarifies the role of pharmacy services administrative organizations (PSAOs) and pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and will correct confusion created by HB 978, which was enacted in 2020.

“PSAOs function to help Maryland’s small, community pharmacies navigate the ever-changing, ultra-complicated pharmacy administrative landscape. They play an extremely important role that allows pharmacists to spend more time at the counter with patients. Their services include managing back-office tasks, communicating with PBMs and large health insurers, and compiling reimbursements — a primary revenue source for pharmacies. PSAOs are not PBMs, nor do they influence the prices of prescription medications or patient benefit designs. Now, more than ever, PSAOs are critically important to the livelihood of the pharmacy community.

“HDA especially thanks the House and Senate bill sponsors Delegate Kelly and Senator Kramer for their leadership, and the Maryland Insurance Administration for their support. We respectfully call on Governor Hogan to sign this bill into law, allowing PSAOs to continue providing essential services to independent pharmacies.”

For more information on PSAOs, please visit

About HDA

The Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA) represents primary pharmaceutical distributors — the vital link between the nation’s pharmaceutical manufacturers and pharmacies, hospitals, long-term care facilities, clinics and others nationwide. Since 1876, HDA has helped members navigate regulations and innovations to get the right medicines to the right patients at the right time, safely and efficiently. The HDA Research Foundation, HDA’s nonprofit charitable foundation, serves the healthcare industry by providing research and education focused on priority healthcare supply chain issues.