The 340B Drug Pricing Program provides financial relief to safety-net hospitals from high prescription drug costs. Section 340B of the Public Health Service Act requires pharmaceutical manufacturers participating in Medicaid to sell outpatient drugs at discounted prices to health care organizations that care for uninsured and low-income patients. The New Hampshire Hospital Association has continued to work with the American Hospital Association’s Advocacy Alliance for the 340B Drug Program to advocate in support of protecting this vital program for participating New Hampshire hospitals and their patients.
As a result of CMS’ final rule in 2017 on the 340B Drug Discount Program that imposed drastic reductions of nearly 30% in Medicare Part B payments for certain hospitals that participate in the program, the American Hospital Association and others filed a federal lawsuit to prevent CMS from implementing these cuts.
On June 15, 2022, The Supreme Court of the United States ruled unanimously in favor of the American Hospital Association and others, reversing a 2020 court of appeals decision upholding the authority of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to significantly cut payments to certain hospitals that participate in the 340B Drug Pricing Program. However, the Court’s decision did not determine a remedy for the unlawful payment cuts, so we will continue federal efforts through the AHA in urging HHS to provide prompt repayment to 340B hospitals without penalizing the rest of the hospital field.