Payment cuts in the 340B prescription drug program will most likely hurt hospital financial performance, and among those most likely to be hurt are DSH hospitals, small hospitals, and rural hospitals.
These are among the conclusions in a report recently issued by S&P Global Ratings.
The report concludes that
…the impact of the cuts to the 340B Drug Pricing Program on not-for-profit hospitals that rely on 340B drug savings will likely weaken their operating performance at a time of already tightening margins.
Effective the beginning of 2018, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services cut the 340B program 16 percent, or $1.6 billion, reducing the reimbursement 340B-eligible hospitals receive for dispensing prescription drugs on an outpatient basis to eligible patients.
The hospitals most affected, according to S&P, are those that
…depend more on the margin they receive from 340B medications to sustain their bottom line and overall financial profiles. In these cases, cuts to the program are likely to further stress already-constrained operating performance, adding to financial pressure and possible negative rating actions.
Most private safety-net hospitals participate in the 340B program and will be affected by the recent cut. NAUH conveyed to CMS its opposition to the cut when it was proposed last fall and earlier this year asked Congress to intervene and reverse it.
Learn more about the possible financial impact on hospitals of recent 340B payment cuts in this S&P Global report.