KHN Morning Briefing

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Pharma May Get Reprieve From Rule Penalizing Drugmakers For Overcharging Hospitals

The Trump administration suggested that it may further delay the controversial rule and that it is now seeking public input about a postponement.

Stat: Will Trump Give Pharma A Gift? Fines For Overcharging Safety-Net Hospitals May Be Delayed
A controversial rule that would penalize drug makers for overcharging hospitals, clinics, and other providers for medicines that are purchased under the federal government’s 340B drug discount program may be delayed by nearly an entire year. The 340B program requires drug makers to offer discounts of up to 50 percent on all outpatient drugs — for everything from AIDS to diabetes — to hospitals, clinics, and health centers that are known as safety-net providers, because they serve indigent populations. Currently, there are about 12,470 such providers, according to the U.S. Human Resources and Service Administration. (Silverman, 8/30)

In other pharmaceutical news —

Stat: New Data On Incyte, Merck Skin Cancer Immunotherapy Look Promising
Updated results were disclosed Wednesday night from a mid-stage clinical trial of Incyte’s epacadostat combined with Merck’s Keytruda to treat patients with metastatic melanoma. The new data, culled from the study Incyte calls ECHO-202, look good, matching or exceeding investor expectations. (Feurstein, 8/30)

The Associated Press: CVS Customer Seeks Dismissal Of Recent Drug Prices Lawsuit
A CVS customer wants to end a short-lived, federal lawsuit that hit the drugstore chain in a sensitive area: The prices it charges for prescriptions. The customer accused CVS Health Corp. of conspiring with pharmacy benefits managers to charge insured patients more for some generic medicines than people who pay cash. The lawsuit filed earlier this month also said the chain wasn't telling customers about the potential savings they could gain by paying cash. (8/30)

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