Federal law provides an opportunity for discount pricing of prescription drugs through Section 340B of the Public Health Service Act. This provision provides that clinics and certain hospitals may pay prices for pharmaceuticals that are generally less than the Medicaid net price because they are able to negotiate sub-ceiling prices, and because they avoid drug mark-ups and dispensing fees. States are taking advantage of this program to increase access to clinic pharmacies in underserved rural areas and urban neighborhoods, and to reduce the pharmaceutical costs for their corrections population, and for people with HIV and other conditions requiring expensive specialty drugs.
Researching this Issue
Model laws and best practices, testimony supporting these initiatives, and background information and research materials on the pricing of prescription drugs, including reports, court decisions and news articles, are posted here. Other materials and policy options for reducing drug prices may be found on the issue pages relating to Purchasing Pools, Generics, and Medicaid & Medicare. See also the Related Links below to connect to other organizations and materials relevant to this issue. Safety Net Hospitals for Pharmaceutical Access (SNHPA) has an excellent website with a section specifically tailored to "Opportunities for Collaboration Between States and 340B Providers." The Office of Pharmacy Affairs (OPA) is the agency charged with administering the 340B program and posts the most current government information available on their website. The Pharmacy Services Support Center (PSSC) and 340B Prime Vendor Program also host helpful online guides and assorted data on the subject. NCSL in particular is a good resource; its website has detailed information on how 340B works and how states have accessed its provisions.
Jan 14, 2007Drug Caps Alternatives - Model Policy Covering 340B | >>more
Apr 30, 2003Maine 340(B) Legislation | >>more
Jan 18, 2008Testimony of Rep. Sharon Anglin Treat Executive Director, NLARX Before the Senate Finance Committee Vermont Legislature | >>more
Mar 23, 2006Before Vermont's Senate Finance Committee | >>more
Feb 13, 2013
PharmalotNow, Pharma Takes A Whack At The 340B Program | >>more
Feb 12, 2013
The New York TimesDispute Develops Over Discount Drug Program | >>more
Nov 01, 2012
PharmalotGlaxo Sued For Antitrust In 340B Program | >>more
Sep 26, 2011Manufacturer Discounts in the 340B Program Offer Benefits, but Federal Oversight Needs Improvement | >>more
Feb 18, 2009Rx Action in the States, 2009 | >>more
Jul 15, 2008State Policy Options - 340B Challenges and Opportunities | >>more