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FEDERAL | ASPS Comments on the Blueprint to Lower Drug Prices

ASPS and the Alliance of Specialty Medicine, of which ASPS is a member, submitted a letter to the Department of Health and Human Services voicing concerns on drug pricing, out-of-pocket costs for patients and the ever-increasing financial burden that may put needed treatments out of reach.

Within a blueprint released by HHS, the Department requested information on which drugs or classes of drugs would be good candidates to move from Part B to Part D. The Alliance responded and urged the Department to maintain coverage for physician-administered drugs and biologics under Medicare Part B. ASPS and the Alliance believe it is unsafe to administer these types of products at home without medical supervision, especially if medications require specific storage and temperature requirements or are injected or infused intravenously.

HHS also inquired about the Copay Discount Cards and asked whether the Department should lower consumer costs or drive up list prices. The Alliance stressed that any insurance policy that limits the use of the copay cards should have an exception for products for which there is no generic or cheaper biosimilar alternative available.

ASPS and the Alliance have urged CMS to reform or eliminate the drug rebate system instead of leveraging the six protected drug classes in Part D to control list prices. ASPS does not believe that limiting the protected classes accomplishes the goal of creating a better drug supply chain for patients, but rather punishes or rewards patients based on the actions of manufacturers.

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