skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Friday, March 1, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

As Congress and presidential candidates trade accusations over immigration reform, advocates and experts urge caution in spreading misinformation; Alabama takes new action IVF policy following controversial court decision; and central states urge caution with wildfires brewing.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Congress reaches a deal to avoid a partial government shutdown again. Arizona Republicans want to ensure Trump remains on their state ballot and Senate Democrats reintroduce the John Lewis Voting Rights Act.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Hard times could be ahead for rural school districts that spent federal pandemic money on teacher salaries, a former Oregon lumber community drafts a climate-action plan and West Virginians may soon buy raw milk from squeaky-clean cows.

Community Health Centers Call for Added Protections

play audio
Play

Tuesday, July 5, 2022   

Community health centers are calling on state and federal lawmakers for added protections against drug manufactures for drastically cutting them out of a federal drug discount program.

The 340B Drug Pricing program allows health centers to purchase outpatient medication at reduced costs, so they can then provide it to a greater reach of patients while drug companies get reimbursed. But in the past two years, drug producers and third-party prescription drug benefit managers have been restricting centers, threatening their financial stability.

A survey by the National Association of Community Health Centers shows more than half their patients would go without needed medications, including insulin for diabetes patients and inhalers for children with asthma, if they are cut out of the program.

Ben Browning, vice president and CEO of the Florida Association of Community Health Centers, explained the importance of the program.

"These contract arrangements are really the lifeblood," Browning contended. "They are the lifeline for a lot of the patients that may not otherwise have access to these reduced-cost, reduced-price medications."

But the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, the lobbying arm of the drug-manufacturing industry, countered the program needs to change, claiming there is little to no evidence patients are benefiting. They also are calling for centers to share data in an effort to tamp down on potential fraud and abuse in the system.

Browning argued the centers continue to fill a critical need because many health care providers do not have the financial resources to support an in-house pharmacy. The survey showed 86% of health centers utilize contract pharmacies, allowing them to serve hundreds of ZIP codes.

"Put some protections in law, in regulations, in statute, that said the 340B program is a vital component of the health care system," Browning urged. "This is a vital component of maintaining and securing the safety net."

It is estimated enrolled hospitals and other covered entities in 340B can achieve average savings of 25% to 50% in pharmaceutical purchases. The issue is also playing out in courts with conflicting rulings across the country.

Disclosure: The National Association of Community Health Centers contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy and Priorities, and Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
House Bill passed with an overwhelming vote of 94-6, with three abstentions. Its companion, Senate Bill 159, passed unanimously with a vote of 34-0. (Chad Robertson/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

play sound

The Alabama House and Senate both passed bills this week that would help people resume in vitro fertilization and provide legal protections for provid…


Environment

play sound

It's early in the season for wildfires in Nebraska, but dozens of firefighters have already been battling a large wildfire near North Platte for …

Social Issues

play sound

A new report finds some Missouri laws and prospective laws are perceived as discriminatory regardless of their actual intent - and it outlines some bi…


Many transmission projects already follow highway corridors, but depending on the state, policy experts say laws can make it harder to add new power lines along federal interstates. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

By Frank Jossi for Energy News Network.Broadcast version by Mike Moen for Minnesota News Connection reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Pub…

Environment

play sound

By Claire Carlson, John Upton and Kaitlyn Trudeau for The Daily Yonder.Broadcast version by Mark Richardson for Oregon News Service for the Public …

From book bans to teacher qualifications, a new national report from the Network of Public Education examines the laws and policies that support or undermine each state's public schools and the students who attend them. (Pixabay)

Social Issues

play sound

A new Network for Public Education report grades Florida an "F" for its public school funding. As Florida lawmakers negotiate the state budget in …

Social Issues

play sound

As members of Congress and presidential candidates battle it out over immigration, a group of Nevada leaders and experts dedicated to advancing …

Social Issues

play sound

A bill in Olympia would open access to unemployment while workers are on strike, but time is running out for lawmakers to pass the legislation…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021