Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released guidance and a Fact Sheet that will provide Medicare Advantage (MA) plans the option of utilizing “step therapy” for Medicare Part B drugs. Recall, the concept of changing the way Medicare pays for Part B drugs was first discussed in the Administration’s May 2018 Blueprint.
***5/14/2018 Update*** This morning, HHS Secretary Azar gave a speech offering additional details on the Blueprint. Included in his remarks are plans to publicly identify companies suspected of “using public health rules to pad their profits”; send letters to all Medicare Part D plan sponsors indicating gag clauses in pharmacy contracts are unacceptable […]
Tomorrow at 2 p.m., EST, the President is scheduled to deliver a long-awaited drug pricing strategy speech to put “America’s patients first.” While details of the speech have been closely held, it is anticipated that it will discuss a “comprehensive strategy” for combating the rising cost of prescription drugs and build on two previous actions which […]
Yesterday, the Administration released its Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) Budget blueprint. The $4.4 trillion Budget blueprint includes several proposals directed at lowering the cost of prescription drugs. These proposals are presented across the Budget volumes that reflect the Administration’s policy and fiscal priorities. Since many of these proposals require Congressional […]
Today, the President sent Congress the $4 trillion Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Proposal – his last while in office. While the Budget on the whole is dead on arrival in the Republican-controlled Congress, there are provisions worth noting because of their current newsworthiness and possible reemergence in future policy debates. Moreover, proposals directed at addressing the […]
Last week, Congress passed and the President signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2016 (“the Omnibus”). This legislation contains both $1.1 trillion in government spending for FY16 as well as $650 billion in tax breaks. The Omnibus includes several health care related provisions, both on the funding and tax sides. This post highlights some of the more significant items.