Bristol Myers becomes 12th pharmaceutical company to restrict sales of 340B – Endpoints News

Bristol Myers Squibb recently joined 11 of its fellow pharmaceutical companies in limiting the number of contract pharmacies that can access certain drugs at reduced prices through a federal program known as 340B.

Bristol Myers is just the latest in a string of top pharma companies moving in their own direction as the Biden administration’s Health Resources and Services Administration scrambles to rein in the discount program on medicines for the most needy Americans.

Created in 1992, 340B is a federal health program that requires pharmaceutical companies to offer deep discounts on their drugs to hospitals that treat low-income patients. But in recent years, big pharma has begun to impose their own restrictions on the bloat program, saying hospitals use an unlimited number of so-called “contract” pharmacies – an outside pharmacy not owned by the hospital – to get more discounts.

The administration has struggled to manage what drug companies say is a program that accounts for nearly 10% of the entire U.S. drug market.

As of March 1, 2022, BMS said it will only recognize up to two designated 340B contract pharmacy locations (including one for its blockbuster multiple myeloma drugs like Revlimid and Pomalyst) per 340B hospital that does not has no entity-owned pharmacy. Other similar moves have cost hospitals dearly in terms of lost savings through the discount scheme.

Recent court rulings, while conflicting on how the companies can proceed with their limits on contract pharmacies, noted that Massachusetts-based Beverly Hospital said it lost more than $125,000 in savings 340 billion since Sanofi’s 340B changes took effect. And, they noted, Strong Memorial Hospital, based in Rochester, N.Y., said Novo Nordisk and other drugmakers “refused to offer drugs at the $340 billion ceiling price. , resulting in overcharges of more than $2 million.”

According to Brian Reid of the Real Chemistry Weekly Bulletin, Bristol Myers’ move, along with those of other similar companies, means 340B price restrictions are now in place for eight of the 10 top-selling drugs in the United States. , and six such restrictions have been imposed since December 1.

HRSA is working on a new regulatory proposal related to its Administrative Dispute Resolution Rule, which would establish new requirements and procedures for the 340B program process. These procedures would establish a method for hospitals and pharmaceutical companies to resolve disputes.

But pursuant to a court order, HRSA is currently prohibited from applying these regulations to Eli Lilly.

Maureen Testoni, president and CEO of hospital association 340B Health, said Bristol Myers, the 12th pharmaceutical company “to violate Act 340B”, “will weaken the healthcare safety net and harm patients who rely on 340B providers to access affordable medicines”. and attention while enriching the company and its shareholders. In 2020, BMS brought in $42.5 billion in revenue, with its cancer drug Revlimid accounting for more than $12 billion.

Comments are closed.