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in 340B Health News Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C., MARCH 12, 2024— Earlier today, a federal lawmaker introduced legislation to prohibit drug companies from imposing restrictions on access to 340B drug pricing program discounts through community and specialty pharmacies. The bill would end restrictive drugmaker policies that have been in place for nearly four years and that have resulted in billions of dollars in lost 340B savings to safety-net hospitals, health centers, and clinics serving many patients with low incomes.

Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) introduced the 340B Pharmaceutical Access To Invest in Essential, Needed Treatments & Support Act, or 340B PATIENTS Act. The bill would make crystal clear that the 340B statute requires participating drug companies to provide eligible outpatient drugs at discounted prices to covered entities that partner with community and specialty pharmacies to dispense these drugs to their patients. It would prohibit drugmakers from placing additional conditions on covered entities for the use of these pharmacy partners. Drug companies that refuse to abide by these requirements would face civil monetary penalties up to $2 million per day.

The following statement is attributed to 340B Health President and CEO Maureen Testoni:

“We applaud Congresswoman Matsui for her steadfast commitment to the health care safety net and the patients in need who rely on it. 340B hospitals play a vital role in the health care safety net, delivering 77% of Medicaid hospital care, providing 67% of the nation’s unpaid care, and offering comprehensive specialty services that otherwise might not be available.”

“For nearly four years, a growing number of some of the world’s largest drug companies have been refusing to provide 340B discounts to safety-net hospitals, health centers, and clinics that use pharmacy partners to expand access to needed drugs and services for their patients. These actions have stripped billions of dollars from the safety net and harmed patient care. The drug companies have ignored their commitments to patients in need by taking to the courts to fight government enforcement actions against them and waging a yearslong campaign to weaken 340B with the single goal of boosting their profits even further.”

“Today, Congresswoman Matsui is introducing the 340B PATIENTS Act to say clearly and unequivocally that this harmful drug company behavior must stop. The legislation states that the 340B statute forbids unilateral drugmaker restrictions or conditions on covered entity access to 340B pricing. We call on lawmakers and congressional leaders to support this vital legislation for the millions of patients whose lives and health are better because of 340B.”

Contact: Jon Tilton at jon.tilton@340bhealth.org or 202-536-2285