HRSA singles out AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Sanofi and United Therapeutics for being in direct violation of the statute establishing the 340B program by illegally denying discounts on prescription drugs to nonprofit clinics and hospitals
WASHINGTON (May 18, 2021) AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) commended the Biden administration for holding shameless, greedy drug companies accountable for illegally denying price discounts on prescription drugs to nonprofit clinics and hospitals because they were using contract pharmacies.
On May 17, the U.S. Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) sent six letters informing AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Sanofi and United Therapeutics that they are in direct violation of the statute establishing the 340B Drug Pricing Program. (HRSA press statement on violation letters).
“Thousands of non-profit providers depend on the 340B program to keep their doors open to serve vulnerable populations. 340B costs taxpayers nothing and stretches federal programs that strengthen the healthcare safety net, already severely stressed by a system that enriches the for-profit pharmaceutical industry,” said Tom Myers General Counsel and Chief of Public Affairs for AHF. “We’re delighted the Biden Administration has shown it will defend the 340B Program that the pharmaceutical industry tries every day to strangle. However, the war is not over. We hope the administration takes the battle to other 340B predators, such as pharmacy benefit managers and private insurance companies that are trying to steal the 340B benefits that support safety net clinics and rural hospitals.”
According to HRSA’s website, “The 340B (drug price program) program enables covered entities to stretch scarce federal resources as far as possible, reaching more eligible patients and providing more comprehensive services. Manufacturers participating in Medicaid agree to provide outpatient drugs to covered entities at significantly reduced prices.”
Politico Pro Heath Care reported on the administration’s action yesterday to rein in the rogue drug companies, writing: “HHS set a June 1 deadline for the drugmakers to resume payments to contract pharmacies participating in the 340B discount program, which helps people with low incomes access medications. Under 340B, some hospitals lacking in-house pharmacies contract with outside firms to dispense medicines on their behalf — and the pharmaceutical industry has long been unhappy that discounts have been extended to those companies.”