Pharmaceutical companies must extend 340B discounts to contract pharmacies, the Department of Health and Human Services told the pharmaceutical industry at the end of 2020.

Not so fast, the pharmaceutical industry has replied.

Several pharmaceutical companies have indicated that they are not prepared to assert that they will comply with the HHS directive, which was issued in an advisory opinion that is not binding.

The 340B program, which enables hospitals that serve especially large numbers of low-income patients to purchase prescription drugs at a discount to dispense to such patients on an outpatient basis, has long been a vital tool in the ability of private safety-net hospitals to serve their community.  NASH has long supported the program, doing so most recently in a September letter to members of Congress.

Go here to see the advisory opinion, and to learn more about the industry’s response to the opinion, read the Fierce Pharma article “Feds tell pharma companies to pony up 340B discounts, but it’s unclear whether they will.”