President Joe Biden and U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra are scheduled to speak on Monday, Feb. 14, during the National Association of Community Health Centers’ Policy and Issues Virtual Forum, NACHC announced on Tuesday.
Securing Biden and Becerra as event speakers is a coup for the group and an indicator of its high regard within the administration. Forum attendees also are scheduled to hear from Michael Steele, the former chair of the Republican National Committee. Steele has written about his support for the 340B program.
It is not known if the president or secretary will touch on the 340B program in their remarks. They are likely to focus on health centers’ major role in COVID-19 testing and vaccination.
Biden and Becerra were scheduled to deliver remarks today in Culpepper, Va.—located in Rep. Abigail Spanberger’s (D) congressional district—on the administration’s work to lower health care costs, including prescription drug costs.
Alex Azar, ex-President Trump’s HHS secretary from January 2018 until the end of Trump’s administration, spoke at the 340B Coalition summer conference in July 2018. Azar told drug manufacturers that change was coming to drug pricing and told providers that change was coming to 340B. About the latter, he said more transparency was needed surrounding how 340B discounts are used, and that the cap between 340B acquisition cost and reimbursement needed to be reduced, especially for government programs.