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The Arizona Untied Rheumatology Alliance (AURA) actively engages in advocacy that grants patients access to treatment and protects our practices from regulations that limit our ability to safely provide the best possible care.

AURA regularly monitors Arizona state legislation and regulations that affect our rheumatologists and the patients we treat. Providing support to our members is critical in making sure our policy priorities continue to be advocated to policymakers in the state of Arizona.

Have information to share? We invite you to advise AURA about any issues that may need to be addressed.

Arizona Step-Therapy Legislation Signed into Law

posted: August 2, 2021
With the assistance of the State Access to Innovative Medicines Coalition (SAIM) and the Coalition of State Rheumatology Organizations (CSRO) Arizona SB 1270 was signed into law by Arizona’s Governor. The new law... Read More

First Quarter Advocacy Update

posted: April 3, 2020
Greetings members, and Happy New Year from your Advocacy Chair;A new DECADE and a new session at the legislature have everyone on alert to bills being crafted that address the challenges of prescribing costly medications... Read More

Accumulator Adjustment Programs Law Goes into Effect January 1, 2020

posted: October 15, 2019
5-20-1126 requires certain health plans and pharmacy benefit managers to count the value of cost sharing assistance towards an enrollee’s contribution to any cost sharing requirement if the drug does not have a... Read More

Highlights from CSRO

posted: September 23, 2019
CHICAGO – The annual meeting of the Coalition of State Rheumatology Organizations (CSRO) commenced on September 13 and 14, boasting legislative victories and inspiring action on issues affecting the practice of... Read More

HB 2166 Becomes Law

posted: May 2, 2019
On April 11th, Governor Ducey signed into law the “HB 2166; insurance; cost-sharing; calculations” legislation which will have a direct impact on our patients out-of-pocket costs for medications.This... Read More

Policy Priority Highlights

  • Non-Medical Switching/Continuity of Care — This is a utilization management tool used by insurer’s that switches a medically stable patient off of their medication for non-medical reasons. For example, a patient signs up for a health plan and the medication they are taking is the preferred drug on the formulary. Three months into their plan year the medication they have been stable on is switched because their drug has been moved to a more restrictive/costly tier or it has been removed from the formulary. AURA would like to see legislation that grandfathers patients and restricts any switching during the plan year.
  • Prior Authorization — For every 1 hour spent with a patient there is 2 hours of administrative work for the office. This burden delays a patient’s access to treatment and can result in a negative outcome. AURA supports a uniformed PA process that has protocols in place for urgent and non-urgent requests. For urgent requests there should be approval or denial within 48 hours. If there is no response then the request should be automatically approved.
  • Step Therapy/Fail First — Step therapy can lead to serious negative patient outcomes and increased costs if not carefully managed. AURA supports the need for step therapy to be regulated by nationally recognized clinical practice guidelines and physicians should have the authority to override step therapy protocols based on a patient’s medical history.
  • Biosimilar Prescription Legislation

Advocacy Resources

  • American College of Rheumatology — The ACR advocates on behalf of rheumatologists and the rheumatology community through involvement in federal and state legislation and regulatory action, participation in hearings, and educating lawmakers on issues important to rheumatologists, health professionals, and patients.
  • Coalition of State Rheumatology Organizations — The CSRO is comprised of over 40 state and regional professional rheumatology societies whose mission is to advocate for excellence in the field of rheumatology, ensuring access to the highest quality care for the management of rheumatologic and musculoskeletal disease.
  • Arizona Medical Association — Guided by ArMA leadership, the Legislative and Government Affairs Committee, and the ArMA Policy Compendium, ArMA actively advocates for Arizona physicians at the state legislature on issues related to regulation, scope of practice, and the state budget.
  • Arthritis Foundation — Advocacy and Access Priorities are the biggest challenges identified by Advocates and Ambassadors of the foundation. The top three advocate priorities are:
    1. Research for a Cure
    2. Managing Chronic Pain
    3. Access to Insurance Coverage and Providers.
  • Arizona Nurse Practitioner Council — The Arizona Nurse Practitioner Council is a local chapter of the Arizona Nurses Association, and an affiliate of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. Their mission is to advance the practice and professional stature of Nurse Practitioners in Arizona through legislative impact, education, community outreach, and involvement.