Each week, more and more groups are calling attention to the 340B program and its myriad problems. Here’s a quick recap of some of the latest voices out there.
- In a letter to House Energy and Commerce Chairman Walden, Piedmont Healthcare, a large Georgia-based system with several 340B hospitals, states “the 340B Program is deeply flawed” and goes on to state “the program needs to be improved so the original intent of the program is followed by all and systems such as ours that already do so are not put at a competitive disadvantage by other systems which do not.” Adding to calls for reform, Piedmont writes it “stands ready to partner with you and the Committee to develop common-sense and meaningful reforms …”
- In a recently released paper, the New England Journal of Medicine notes that there is little evidence 340B hospitals are using revenue from the program to support patients. The paper concludes, “We found no evidence of hospitals using the surplus monetary resources generated from administering discounted drugs to invest in safety-net providers, provide more inpatient care to low-income patients, or enhance care for low-income groups in ways that would reduce mortality. These results suggest hospital responses that are contrary to the goals of the program and have a number of important policy implications.”
- Early this month, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released the findings from its investigation into the 340B program, including 12 recommendations on how to fix the program. The report states “concerns have been raised about how some entities use the program and how HRSA administers and oversees the program” and notes that “The committee’s investigation has uncovered several weaknesses in program administration and oversight.”
These are just some of the latest comments made recently that highlight the need to fix 340B and ensure that patients are in fact benefiting. How many groups must call attention to 340B and how it is negatively impacting patients before policymakers take action?
Legislation has been introduced in both the House and the Senate that take steps toward the goal of improving 340B. Congress needs to push the legislation over the finish line.
Let’s fix 340B.
Learn more at PhRMA.org/340B.
Nicole Longo Nicole is director of public affairs at PhRMA focusing on Medicare, 340B, importation and more. She previously worked for a D.C.-based public affairs firm where she assisted a wide range of clients with communications efforts on everything from trade policy to agriculture policy to health care policy. Outside the office, Nicole can be found trying new restaurants (usually Italian), taking an occasional barre class and cheering on the Cincinnati Bengals.