Ensuring Patients Receive the Medicine They Need, When and Where They Need It

Patients First Wisconsin is an initiative aimed at educating health care stakeholders, legislative leaders and the general public about the threat to health care quality, safety and affordability posed by insurance companies requiring certain drugs to be purchased through their exclusive specialty pharmacies, a practice known as “white bagging.”

What is White Bagging?

Insurance company mandated (also known as payer-mandated) white bagging is a practice by insurance companies requiring that certain life-changing medications be shipped from a source that they dictate, rather than using the patient’s local hospital pharmacy. Patients with conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, hemophilia or cancer, could be impacted by these policies.   

According to a recent report, 83% of hospitals surveyed said that specialty medications delivered to them for patient administration through white bagging did not arrive on time, and another 66% of hospitals said that they have received the wrong dose.

Protecting Patients

The growing tendency for health insurers nationally and here in Wisconsin to limit the source of specialty medications creates very real challenges for hospitals and health systems in the state to provide the best possible care to their patients. For this reason, the Wisconsin Hospital Assocation and other health care organizations are engaging health care stakeholders, elected leaders and the public to develop and implement policy solutions that maximize health care accessibility, affordability and quality throughout Wisconsin—so that our friends, family and neighbors receive the care they deserve.

Coalition Partners


Take Action

White bagging causes serious, potentially dangerous disruptions to patient care and removes patient choice at the time they deserve it most.

This disruption to care is happening right now to patients across the country, including in Wisconsin, because insurance companies are making decisions that belong to doctors and their patients. Lawmakers in states across the country are taking action to end the harmful practice of white bagging. Wisconsin needs to do the same.

Contact your state lawmaker NOW. Tell them it is time to put an end to insurance company white bagging and put patients first in Wisconsin.

Contact Your State Lawmaker NOW!