California State Sen. Richard Pan (D) speaking to a large assembly
California state Sen. Richard Pan (D) asked a state Assembly committee to cancel a hearing on his Senate-approved bill to prohibit drug manufacturer conditions on 340B pricing and pharmacy benefit manager discrimination against 340B covered entities.


Sponsor Halts California Bill to Shield 340B Providers from Manufacturers and PBMs’ Actions

A bill in California to prohibit drug manufacturer conditions on 340B pricing and pharmacy benefit manager discrimination against 340B covered entities died in a state Assembly committee on Tuesday.

The state Senate voted 24-9 to pass the bill, SB-939, on May 23, sending it to the legislature’s lower chamber for consideration. The bill’s lead author, state Senate Health Committee Chair Richard Pan (D), asked the state Assembly Health Committee to cancel a June 28 hearing on the bill, scuttling it for this year’s legislative session. 340B Report asked Pan by email early this morning Eastern time why he sought the cancellation.

Arkansas is the only state that indisputably has a law addressing drug manufacturer conditions in 340B pharmacy. Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) is challenging it in federal court. Michigan entities say a bill signed into law in February focused mainly on payer discrimination against entities has language that effectively creates protections against manufacturer policies comparable to those in Arkansas’s law.

Twenty-three states have passed laws since 2019 targeting payer and PBM discrimination against entities.

APLA Health, a California federally qualified health center focused on the LGBTQ+ and HIV communities, and CaliforniaHealth+ Advocates, the state primary care association’s advocacy affiliate, said in a statement that large and profitable drug manufacturers “have waged a concerted misinformation campaign against the 340B program within Congress and the California State Capitol. Their campaign seeks to distort how the 340B program operates in order to improve their bottom lines and reduce access to discounted drugs for safety-net providers and low-income patients.”

The two groups said they “will continue educating legislators about the importance of the 340B program and advocating for urgently needed protections. We remain committed to preserving the 340B program and holding both drug manufacturers and PBMs accountable while maintaining patients’ ability to access affordable medications.”

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