Virtually all communities in the U.S. are home to healthcare providers that participate in 340B. This includes inner-city and suburban nonprofit safety-net hospitals, rural hospitals, and community health clinics. All provide services to patients regardless of ability to pay.
Many 340B providers are in medically underserved areas that treat a disproportionate share of vulnerable and special needs populations, including minorities, refugees, and those with disabilities. As 340B discounts are illegally squeezed by big pharmaceutical companies, these healthcare providers have fewer resources to carry out their missions. More than 75 percent of hospitals surveyed report that they likely will need to make cuts to vital health services and patient support programs. A third of smaller, mostly rural hospitals say that the restrictions put their facilities at risk of closure. Patients with diabetes and the safety-net providers who care for them are bearing the brunt of the drug companies’ actions.
Infusion centers that provide services such as chemo, transfusions and dialysis –particularly in rural areas – are at risk of closure, which would force many patients to travel long distances for treatment. Adding insult to injury, infusion drugs tend to be extremely expensive, and these patients are often no longer eligible for discounts they formerly received through the 340B program.