Last week the House Energy and Commerce Committee took a look at the 340B prescription drug discount program, which requires pharmaceutical companies to sell discounted drugs for outpatient use to hospitals that care for especially large numbers of low-income patients.
The previous week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued a proposed Medicare regulation calling for significant reductions in Medicare payments for such drugs.
The hearing touched on the CMS proposal to reduce Medicare payments for 340B drugs, the high prices of prescription drugs, the 340B program’s growth over the years, the possibility that the program is being abused by hospitals and clinics, and more.
The 340B program is an essential tool in the efforts of private safety-net hospitals to help the many low-income residents of the communities they serve.
Learn more about the hearing and the issues raised during it this Kaiser Health News report.