Letter Opposing 340B Policy Now Active in U.S. House

Posted on September 15, 2017

As part of the fiscal year 2018 outpatient prospective payment system proposed rule, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a new, lower payment policy under the 340B prescription drug program. For most prescription drugs purchased through the 340B program, the CMS proposes to pay hospitals at the average sales price (ASP) minus 22.5 percent, rather than the current rate of ASP plus 6 percent. The CMS estimates that this proposal would reduce Part B drug payments for 340B drugs by as much as $900 million. 

The MHA strongly opposes the CMS's proposal and has submitted comments to the agency. These reduced payments hurt small, rural hospitals and large, urban hospitals alike. The American Hospital Association organized a “Dear Colleague” letter in the U.S. House of Representatives to encourage the CMS to rescind this detrimental payment policy. Reps. David McKinley (R-WV) and Mike Thompson (D-CA) are taking the lead in collecting signatures for the Dear Colleague letter.

It is crucial to secure as many signatures as possible for the letter, which is available online. Michigan U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Trenton) has already committed to signing the letter. MHA members are urged to contact their U.S. representative today and ask them to sign the letter. Representatives may contact Margie Almanza in McKinley's office or Casey Badmington in Thompson's office about signing the House letter.Featured in the MHA Monday Report. Click to view the full edition.

A similar letter is expected to circulate soon in the Senate. For more information about this effort to protect 340B payments to hospitals, contact Laura Appel at the MHA.

Tags: 340B Drug Pricing Program, AHA, prescription drugs, advocacy

Posted in: Issues in Healthcare

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