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Automated pill kiosks now permitted at pharmacies after Governor’s signature

The machines are already permitted at facilities such as long-term care homes and prisons.

Gov. Ron DeSantis has signed legislation (HB 59) allowing pharmacies to dispense medication through ATM-like kiosks.

Those kiosks are already permitted at facilities such as long-term care homes and prisons.

The machines will not dole out controlled substances, which can be addicting and are subject to more strict oversight. Democratic Rep. Matt Willhite sponsored the House version of the bill, which ultimately passed.

“I am grateful for everyone that worked so hard to get this legislation all the way through the process,” Willhite said Monday after DeSantis signed the measure.

“With the passage of this bill, we hope to expand an individual’s access to their prescription medication. These machines will only dispense generic medications. Nonetheless, this technology will make it easier for busy parents and people living in rural communities to safely access the medications that they need. Thank you to my colleague Sen. [Travis] Hutson for working with me on this bill.”

Hutson, a Republican, backed the Senate version of the legislation (SB 708). That version was laid on the table.

Some Democratic Senators, such as Bill Montford, worried the machines could crowd out smaller pharmacies. Proponents of the measure pointed to the limited drugs available in the kiosks, arguing there would still be room for rural pharmacies.

Representatives from AARP, Walgreen’s, MedAvail, Americans for Prosperity, the Florida Retail Federation and the James Madison Institute backed the measure. The Florida Pharmacy Association opposed opposed the bill during the 2020 Session.

Written By

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to ryan.t.nicol@gmail.com.

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