12 Jan Healthcare Dive: Hospitals disappointed with court ruling placing HHS in charge of 340B repayment
“A federal court has ruled it’s up to the HHS to determine how to repay hospitals enrolled in the 340B drug discount program after years of underpayments, sparking concern from hospital groups.
The court’s ruling on Tuesday is the latest update in a yearslong legal dispute between safety net hospitals and the government over payment rates, that wound its way up to the Supreme Court. The dispute originated in 2018, when the CMS changed the rate of payments in 340B from the average sales price of the drugs plus 6% to the average sales price minus 22.5%. The cuts amounted to some $1.6 billion annually for 340B hospitals.
In June, SCOTUS ruled unanimously that it was illegal for the Trump administration to cut payment rates for drugs acquired through the 340B program, and ordered it to pay back billions to hospitals.
But 340B hospitals are still waiting for the payments to be returned to them. The American Hospital Association and America’s Essential Hospitals, who were plaintiffs in the case, expressed disappointment that the repayment process would be put in the hands of the agency who underpaid them initially.”