Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA, left) toured a Kroger pharmacy with Chuck Page, RPh (right), in Waycross, Ga., this week as part of the NACDS RxIMPACT Program.

Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA), the only pharmacist currently serving in Congress, toured a Kroger pharmacy in Waycross, Ga., this week as part of the NACDS RxIMPACT grassroots advocacy program. Kroger’s Chuck Page, RPh, said the meeting was “outstanding” and noted that they covered several key topics, including direct and indirect remuneration (DIR) fees and support for provider status legislation. The pharmacy team then discussed the opioid abuse crisis, emphasizing NACDS-backed pharmacy solutions to the opioid abuse epidemic, including the need for a national prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP), 7-day supply limits for initial opioid prescriptions and mandatory electronic prescriptions.

The team said Carter was engaged throughout the more than 40-minute meeting and gave Page his business card and wrote his cell phone number down to reach him directly, he said, in case he ever needs anything.

Many of the recent NACDS RxIMPACT pharmacy tours have been directly with members of Congress themselves who have come to see firsthand the value of healthcare delivery to their constituents in the pharmacies that serve their communities. Additionally, meetings with congressional staff also prove highly effective, as these people are highly influential in policymaking and in determining whose perspectives are insightful when seeking input on emerging issues.

Notably at this year’s NACDS RxIMPACT Day on Capitol Hill, pharmacy advocates from all 50 states visited 100 percent of congressional office on Capitol Hill in person.