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Current 340B Legislation: Transforming Healthcare Access Nationwide

340B PATIENTS ACT Federal Legislation

On March 12, 2024, legislators unveiled a new federal bill that addresses systemic barriers to healthcare and expanding the reach of the 340B Drug Pricing Program. The key provisions of the 340B PATIENTS Act focus on expands patient access, enhanced program oversight, and streamlined administrative processes.

The bill proposes to broaden patient eligibility criteria, allowing more individuals to benefit from the discounted medications provided through the 340B Program. By extending coverage to underserved populations, including those in rural and remote areas, the legislation aims to improve health outcomes and reduce disparities.

Recognizing the importance of accountability and transparency, the 340B PATIENTS Act introduces measures to strengthen program oversight. This includes increased reporting requirements for participating entities and enhanced audit procedures to ensure compliance with program guidelines. By promoting transparency, the legislation seeks to safeguard the integrity of the 340B Program.

The bill streamlines certain program processes, such as eligibility verification and recertification, to alleviate healthcare providers' administrative burdens. By simplifying administrative tasks, the legislation aims to empower providers to focus more resources on patient care and community outreach initiatives.

The 340B PATIENTS Act has the potential to usher in a new era of healthcare delivery characterized by greater equity and accessibility. By expanding patient access and strengthening program oversight, the legislation seeks to address disparities in healthcare access and improve health outcomes for vulnerable populations. Moreover, streamlined administrative processes are poised to enhance operational efficiency, enabling providers to maximize the impact of limited resources.

As the 340B PATIENTS Act gains traction among lawmakers and stakeholders, its transformative potential in advancing healthcare access cannot be overstated. The legislation prioritizes patient needs, promotes transparency, and streamlines administrative processes, paving the way for a more inclusive and patient-centered healthcare system.

Current State Bill Legislation

There is a trend spreading across the nation where states are taking it into their own hands to provide those covered entities that support their residents with healthcare. As of today, there are twenty-four (24) out of fifty (50) states have either passed a bill or are in the process of introducing and clearing it through their legislative chambers to protect the 340B Program against current limitations or restrictions by thirty-one (31) drug manufacturers.

In the table below, you will see the states and where their bills are currently within the process.

The 340B Drug Pricing Program has been instrumental in ensuring access to affordable medications for vulnerable populations across the United States. One key strategy within the program is the utilization of multiple contract pharmacies, which play a vital role in expanding patient access to discounted medications, particularly in rural areas.

For nearly four years now, contract pharmacy relationships have been greatly impacted by manufacturers who have limited the use of the 340B discount to more than one contract pharmacy. These relationships assist in expanding access to medications in rural areas, improving medication adherence and health outcomes, enhancing patient choice and convenience, and supporting the sustainability of rural healthcare facilities.

Continued support and expansion of the 340B program, including its use of multiple contract pharmacies, are essential for addressing healthcare disparities and promoting equitable access to medications for all Americans, regardless of where they live. 

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