Congresswoman Doris Matsui
“There’s been a lot of criticism of the 340B program lately and I’m concerned about the conversation on 340B happening today,” Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) said during a House Energy & Commerce health subcommittee hearing today.

News Alert

U.S. House Panel Debates 340B in Context of Health Care Transparency and Consolidation

The 340B program was discussed at length today during a U.S. House subcommittee hearing on price transparency and consolidation in health care, with three Republicans questioning whether hospitals are abusing the program and two Democrats and a Republican cautioning against changing 340B in ways that would harm safety-net providers and their patients.

Energy & Commerce health subcommittee Vice Chair Larry Buchson (R-Ind.) and members Gus Bilirakis (R-Fla.) and John Joyce (R-Pa.) spoke in favor of changing 340B to demand more transparency and accountability from hospitals. “Because Congress failed in 1992 and the last 30 years since to set clear guidelines and parameters for the program, we have no way of knowing when the program is being exploited,” Buchson said. “And we know that it is, and that’s not just my opinion.”

E&C full committee member Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) warned against burdening hospitals unnecessarily and making 340B “a scapegoat for high drug pricing and other problems that we know exist with the health care system.” Subcommittee member Bob Latta (R-Ohio) said transparency in 340B should be improved without hurting rural hospitals while member Ann Kuster (D-N.H.) said that without the 340B program, health care would be out of reach for too many people.

We will report in more depth about today’s hearing in our next regularly scheduled issue Thursday.

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