The AHA and American Society of Health-System Pharmacists today urged the Food and Drug Administration to take appropriate enforcement action to protect patients from a payer-mandated drug distribution model known as “white bagging.” 

Under the white bagging model, commercial health insurers require that patient medications be distributed through a narrow network of specialty pharmacies, often affiliated with the payer. Providers are then required to receive, store and administer the medications without ever taking ownership of the product or having adequate line of sight into the origin or chain of custody of each specific medication it receives, potentially jeopardizing patient safety and limiting the ability of providers to make critical care decisions for their patients. 

“White bagging has surged in frequency over the past decade, creating what amounts to a shadow inventory that hospitals and health systems do not legally own and which exists largely outside of the [Drug Supply Chain Security Act’s] track and trace requirements,” jeopardizing patient safety and exacerbating supply chain security challenges, the organizations said.
 

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