LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — State Rep. Carrie A. Rheingans (D-Ann Arbor) introduced legislation today that would make sure all payments made by or on behalf of insured patients will go toward their deductible and out-of-pocket costs.

If passed, the policy would prevent patients from needing to pay out-of-pocket again.

The proposed legislation is aimed at protecting patients who receive assistance funding for their medications.

“The copay assistance funds that drug manufacturers and other third parties, such as nonprofit organizations, offer patients with very expensive medications doesn’t matter much if they don’t count toward a patient’s deductible or out-of-pocket maximum,” Rheingans said.

“We need strong legislation to protect patients from having to pay that cost again out of their own pocket. Folks shouldn’t have to choose between dinner on the table or medication in the cabinet,” Rheingans continued.

In 2021, Rep. Bronna Kahle (R-Adrian) introduced a similar bill. It passed with strong bipartisan support in the House, but did not receive a hearing in the Senate Committee on Health Policy and Human Services.

The 2021 bill was supported by the Arthritis Foundation, National Psoriasis Foundation, Michigan All Copays Count Coalition, Michigan Society of Hematology and Oncology, the Association for Clinical Oncology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.