The Senate Finance Committee today voted 19-9 to pass the Prescription Drug Pricing Reduction Act, legislation to reduce drug costs.

In a letter yesterday to Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., AHA said, “We agree with the Committee’s goal of reducing the price of drugs, and applaud many of the steps outlined in the description of the Chairman’s Mark of the Prescription Drug Pricing Reduction Act of 2019. However, we have serious concerns regarding the provisions that reduce reimbursements to providers and hospitals that administer drugs.”

Specifically, Section 107 would prohibit Medicare from paying for a Part B drug if the manufacturer fails to pay a civil monetary penalty assessed for not paying a required rebate. Section 110 would establish a $1,000 maximum add-on amount for a separately payable Part B drug, biological or biosimilar. And Section 111 would apply site-neutral payment cuts narrowly, only to drug administration services furnished in grandfathered off-campus provider-based departments, facilities that have been statutorily exempt from such cuts.

“These provisions would implement payment reductions to hospitals and physicians, but do not address the high prices set by drug companies,” AHA wrote.

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