Arkansas Passes First-of-its-Kind Bill to Counter Pharma’s 340B Contract Pharmacy Moves

Arkansas state lawmakers this week passed what is thought to be the first bill in the nation to address drug manufacturers' denials of 340B pricing on drugs dispensed by contract pharmacies. | Jim Bowen/Flickr
The Arkansas legislature on Tuesday passed what is believed to be the first bill nationally to address pharmaceutical manufacturer denials of 340B pricing on drugs when they are dispensed by contract pharmacies.

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Biden Wants to Let Medicare Negotiate Drug Prices, but Not Via His American Families Plan

President Biden applauds Vice President Kamala Harris and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi prior to his speech before a joint session of Congress last night. The event marked the first time in history that two women were seated in the two positions of authority and honor directly behind the president during such a speech. | @POTUS Twitter
President Biden has left out of his American Families human-capital investment plan drug pricing reforms that Democratic leaders in Congress have pressed him hard to add. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), House Energy and Commerce (E&C) Chair Frank Pallone (D-N.J.),
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Will Biden’s American Families Plan Include an Rx Drug Pricing Measure?

There is a rift between President Biden and House Democrats over whether to include provisions to lower drug prices in his American Families plan, or deal with drug pricing later in another bill. | Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz
President Biden might exclude legislation to reduce what consumers and the federal government pay for prescription drugs from his American Families human and capital investment initiative, news organizations report this morning. Biden is scheduled to describe his infrastructure investment plan
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340B Providers Escape Bullet in House Dem Rx Bill, but Not in GOP Version

U.S. House E&C Chair Frank Pallone this morning re-introduced a major drug pricing bill from the last session of Congress, minus language from last year's version strongly opposed by 340b covered entities. | C-SPAN
U.S. House Energy and Commerce (E&C) Chair Frank Pallone this morning introduced a significantly slimmed-down version of H.R. 3, the drug pricing bill that the House passed during the last session of Congress but the then-GOP-controlled Senate let die.
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Congress Passes Bills Aimed at Boosting Generics and Biosimilars

Congress has sent President Biden two bills to boost generic and biosimilar drugs. Generics are exact copies and biosimilars are highly similar to original brand products. | Shutterstock
The U.S. House of Representatives passed two bills last week intended to reduce the overall costs of medications by boosting competition for generic drugs and biosimilars. As both bills were previously passed by the Senate, they are headed to President
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BREAKING: Key GOP U.S. Senator Presses HHS Deputy Secretary Nominee to Take Action on 340B

Andrea Palm, President Biden's pick to be HHS Deputy Secretary, indicated in response to a question during her confirmation hearing today that "there are things [HHS] can and needs to be doing" about 340B hospitals' complaints about drugs manufacturers and PBMs.
Andrea Palm, President Biden’s pick to be the number two official at the U.S. Health and Human Services Department (HHS), pledged during her U.S. Senate confirmation hearing this morning to make sure that the 340B “is working as it is
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Could Concern About Hospital Price Transparency Boost Push for More Hospital 340B Transparency?

Bipartisan concern in Congress about hospitals' compliance with new price transparency rules might enhearten drugmakers and others who want to impose reporting requirements on 340B hospitals. | Shutterstock
Drugmakers and others who want more reporting requirements for 340B hospitals might take heart from bipartisan concern in Congress about hospitals evading new price transparency rules. | Shutterstock

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340B Could Come Up During Congressional Hearings Thursday

From left to right, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, CMS Administrator nominee Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, and HHS Deputy Secretary nominee Andrea Palm will all be on Capitol Hill on Thursday.
The U.S. Senate Finance Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing Thursday morning on President Biden’s nominations of Chiquita Brooks-LaSure to run the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and Andrea Palm to be U.S. Health and Human Services
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MACPAC Backs Medicaid Change That Could Lower Some 340B Prices

Raising the Medicaid rebate percentage and inflation penalty on accelerated-approval drugs, as the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC) recommends, could lead to lower 340B ceiling prices on those drugs.
Congressional Medicaid policy advisers voted Friday to recommend raising the Medicaid rebate percentage and inflation penalty on drugs that are quickly and conditionally approved to treat serious conditions that fill an unmet need. If Congress follows the advice, 340B covered
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NY State 340B Providers Get More Time to Challenge Reimbursement Change

New York lawmakers and Gov. Andrew Cuomo agreed on budget legislation this week that will delay a Medicaid drug benefit transfer opposed by 340B entities for two years.
New York state lawmakers and Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) agreed this week to postpone transferring Medicaid managed care prescription drug benefits to Medicaid fee for service (FFS) for two years, temporarily averting a significant financial loss to 340B covered entities.
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