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340B Program Protects Patients and Access to Care

By Tom Nickels
December 8, 2017

For 25 years, the 340B drug savings program, at no cost to the government, has enabled eligible hospitals to purchase certain outpatient drugs from pharmaceutical manufacturers at discounted prices. This allows the participating hospitals to use the savings from the discounts to provide an expanded range of comprehensive health services to their local communities, such as increased access to care, clinical pharmacy services, community outreach programs, free vaccines and to fund... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tag: 340B

Don't Cut Medicare

By Tom Nickels
November 20, 2017

The tax bill being considered in the House and Senate could lead to $25 billion in cuts to Medicare, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Those are the consequences under the so-called “pay-as-you-go” law Congress passed in 2010. That law requires tax cuts and certain spending increases to be paired with offsetting provisions. If not, the law forces automatic spending cuts, also known as sequestration. Congress can prevent the cuts, but it can’t be done under the same... read more

Topic: Access and Coverage
Tag: Medicare

The Benefits of Hospital Mergers

By Tom Nickels
November 8, 2017

An article in today’s Politico suggests hospital mergers are having an adverse impact on health local markets and is leading to substandard care and higher prices. But the most recent research on the subject tells a far different and less sensationalist story. A study of recent hospital mergers – those occurring between 2009 and 2014 – shows they result in significant cost savings and quality improvements.

A study by economists at Charles River Associates earlier this year found... read more

Topic: Access and Coverage
Tag: mergers

Report Misleads on Drug Prices

By Tom Nickels
October 19, 2017

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) released yet another report designed to obfuscate the issue of sky-rocketing drug prices. Once again, PhRMA turned its sights on hospitals in just another example of PhRMA choosing to blame others rather than looking inward at the double-digit profits its members enjoy at the expense of patients and the providers who serve them. In a two and a half page “full analysis,” paid for by PhRMA, The Moran Group supposedly... read more

Topic: Access and Coverage
Tag: drug prices

Report misses mark on 340B program

By Tom Nickels
October 10, 2017

The latest report from AIR340B, a group financed and backed by the pharmaceutical industry, continues to misrepresent a program with a successful 25-year history of helping hospitals stretch scarce financial resources to expand and improve access to lifesaving prescription drugs and comprehensive health services for the many patients served by participating hospitals. The report attempts to mislead the debate by comparing changes in the “charity care” provided by a small sample... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tag: 340B

Preserve the 340B program

By Tom Nickels
March 9, 2017

Every day, we see stories about the exorbitant costs of prescription drugs and the serious challenges they pose for individuals and the entire health care system.

One program that has a 25-year track record of improving access to medications and health care services for people in vulnerable communities is the 340B Drug Pricing Program.

It requires pharmaceutical manufacturers participating in Medicaid to sell many outpatient drugs at discounted prices to health care organizations... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tag: 340B

Hospitals, not pharmaceutical manufacturers, are preserving and protecting the safety net

By Tom Nickels
May 17, 2016

A group financed by the pharmaceutical industry is hosting a meeting today on the 340B Drug Pricing Program with the goal of “Preserving the True Safety Net.” But what the meeting really will be about is the pharmaceutical industry – with their skyrocketing prescription drug prices and huge profits – discussing how they can continue to disparage a program with a 25-year history of increasing access to medications and health care services for people in vulnerable communities.

Let’s... read more

Topic: Access and Coverage
Tags: 340B, Drug Pricing Program, Community benefit, access, drug prices

Momentum Building to Replace "All-or-Nothing" Approach to Meaningful Use

By Tom Nickels
May 16, 2016

Hospitals have made good faith efforts to comply with the multitude of requirements under the federal meaningful use program to adopt Electronic Health Records (EHRs). However, under the current approach, failure to meet any one of the requirements, even by a small amount, results in a large penalty. This is unfair to hospitals diligently working to comply with the requirements and expending significant resources to do so.

That’s why we are so pleased with the draft language... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tag: Meaningful Use

Changing 340B is the wrong prescription for addressing skyrocketing pharmaceutical costs

By Tom Nickels
March 8, 2016

The rapidly rising costs of prescription drugs is causing significant financial challenges for patients and their care providers.

Many groups, including the AHA, are evaluating options for addressing this important issue. However, one recent proposal, which is seriously misguided, would reduce a program with a 25-year history of increasing access to medications and health care services for people in vulnerable communities in order to add to record profits of drug... read more

Topic: Access and Coverage
Tags: 340B, Drug Pricing Program, access, price, drug prices

AHA Swiftly Reacts to Protect Rural Health

By Tom Nickels
February 17, 2016

Rural hospitals are their community’s anchor. By providing 24/7 care, essential public services and access to primary care for the 57 million people that live in rural America, these hospitals are vitally important. That’s why the AHA swiftly reacted to guidance issued by CMS late last year which included some inconsistent requirements, and worked with CMS to explain our concerns that some Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) may lose their designation as a result of CMS’... read more

Topic: Access and Coverage
Tags: Community health, rural, CAHs, Critical Access Hospitals



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