DRUG COMPANIES URGED TO PROVIDE DISCOUNTS TO 340B COMMUNITY PHARMACIES



Yesterday, counsel for the American Hospital Association and the five other national groups and three individual hospital systems that sued the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) over its failure to halt drug company actions that undermine the 340B drug pricing program sent letters demanding that the offending drug companies immediately halt their illegal activities.

Following closely on the heels of the HHS advisory opinion that stated that 340B discounts apply to 340B drugs sold by community pharmacies, the letters demanded that the six drug companies discontinue their "illegal practice" and reimburse 340B hospitals for the damages they have incurred due to the drug companies' actions. AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly and Company, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Sanofi and United Therapeutics received the letters.

If the drug companies continue the illegal practices, the letters said the litigants "will continue to seek to require that HHS enforce the 340B statute, covered entities are reimbursed for damages caused by the illegal policy, and the matter is referred to the HHS Inspector General for the imposition of civil money penalties."