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Keeping you afloat amidst the rising sea of regulations

HRSA Delays Effective Date of 340B Final Rule…Again

In a notice published in the Federal Register on Friday, May 19, 2017, the Health Resources and Services Administration announced that it would further delay the effective date of a final rule applicable to all drug manufacturers participating in the 340B Drug Pricing Program.

Implementation and Enforcement of 340B Final Rule Delayed

In a Federal Register notice scheduled to be published on March 20, 2017, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) announced that it will delay the effective date of the January 5, 2017 final rule (the Final Rule) that provided guidance on the calculation of drug ceiling prices and the imposition of civil monetary penalties on certain drug manufacturers participating in the 340B Drug

New Year…Same Rules? HHS Makes Few Changes in Recent 340B Drug Pricing Program Final Rule

The Health Resources and Services Administration, part of the Department of Health and Human Services, published a Final Rule on January 5, 2017 addressing how 340B covered outpatient drug “Ceiling Prices” are to be calculated under the 340B Drug Pricing Program, and how participating drug manufacturers may be subject to certain monetary penalties for violation of the 340B statute (the Final Rule).

Is the Discount Safe Harbor No Longer “Safe?”

In a ruling that could, if adopted by other courts, expose all pharmaceutical discount and rebate arrangements to anti-kickback liability, on August 23, 2016, Judge Rya Zobel in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts denied Omnicare, Inc.’s motion for summary judgment in United States ex rel. Banigan v. Organon USA, Inc., et al.

CMS Releases Covered Outpatient Drug Final Rule FAQs

On July 6, CMS issued a set of Frequently Asked Questions to respond to questions raised by the Covered Outpatient Drug Final Rule that was published on February 1, 2016.  The FAQs can be accessed here; our January 28 article analyzing the final rule can be accessed here and our analysis of the delayed implementation of the revised 5i AMP methodology and 70/30 test can be found here.

Texas Adopts NADAC and Eliminates Some Manufacturer Reporting

Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has finally issued final regulations transitioning to the use of the National Average Drug Acquisition Cost (NADAC) to establish Medicaid ingredient cost reimbursement instead of utilizing manufacturer-reported prices.   As such, effective May 16, 2016, pharmaceutical manufacturers will not be required to provide monthly calculations of Average Wholesale Price, Price to Wholesaler/Distributor, Direct Price to Pharmacy, Direct Price to Chain Pharmacy and Direct Price to Long Term Care Pharmacy to HHSC beginning in June 2016. 

Don’t Discount the Discounts: Pfizer and Wyeth Reach Settlement Over Medicaid Drug Pricing Allegations

The Department of Justice recently announced it has reached a more than $780 million settlement with Pfizer Inc. and its subsidiary Wyeth to resolve allegations that from 2001 through 2006, Wyeth reported false prices to the government on two of its proton pump inhibitor drugs, Protonix Oral and Protonix IV, in violation of the False Claims Act.

New VA Policy: All Covered Drugs, Regardless if Compliant with the Trade Agreements Act, Must Be Offered

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently announced a significant policy change that will now require drug manufacturers to make drugs that are “covered drugs” under the Veterans Health Care Act (VHCA) available to the VA under the manufacturer’s Federal Supply Schedule (FSS) contract, even if those drugs are not compliant with the requirements of Trade Agreements Act (TAA). The announcement from the VA establishes aggressive deadlines for compliance, which manufacturers should note.  

HHS Re-Opens Comment Period on 340B Program Pricing and Penalty Rule

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that they are re-opening the comment period on its June 17, 2015 proposed rule (the Proposed Rule) concerning establishment of the “Ceiling Price” for covered outpatient drugs (340B drugs) and assessment of penalties against manufacturers for violation of 340B pricing rules. Arent Fox LLP previously provided an analysis of the Proposed Rule on our blog, Health Care Counsel, which you can access

DEA Considers Rescheduling Marijuana

The US Drug Enforcement Administration recently announced that it is evaluating whether to downgrade the classification of marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act, which could allow more research into its potential medicinal benefits. A decision is expected this summer.