Twenty-five states are backing the federal government in litigation before two federal appeals courts over drug manufacturers’ denials of 340B pricing when covered entities use contract pharmacies.
A bipartisan group of state attorneys general filed friend of the court briefs this afternoon in support of the federal government in two sets of consolidated cases. The first set of cases, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, involves Novartis and United Therapeutics’ conditions on the 340B contract pharmacy program. The second, in the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia, involves Sanofi and Novo Nordisk’s policies.
“As a result of the manufacturers’ refusals and restrictions, numerous federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) and other safety-net providers operating in our states are unable to provide vulnerable patients with affordable prescription drugs and expanded healthcare services,” the attorneys general said in both briefs.
“Nothing in the statute or the legislative history allows drug manufacturers to unilaterally place industry-wide restrictions on covered entities’ use of contract pharmacies for their prescription dispensing needs,” they said. “Contract pharmacy arrangements as a dispensing mechanism are consistent with § 340B, and manufacturers’ new policies are an improper way to remedy any disputes regarding duplicate reimbursements or drug diversion.”
The attorneys general of Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah, and Vermont filed the two briefs. Connecticut Attorney General William Tong (D) led the coalition of top state law enforcement officials.
We will report more about the amicus briefs in tomorrow’s regularly scheduled issue.