Academic Literature

Expansion of the Medicare 340B Payment Program

As the 340B program expands, it continues to draw national attention.

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Originally published on 12/11/2018 in JAMA Viewpoint

Dr. Peter B. Bach of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Rachel E. Sachs of Washington University in St. Louis outline the unintended consequences of the expansion of the program.

Originally developed to benefit health care facilities that serve disadvantaged patient populations, the 340B program has resulted in a distortion of misaligned incentives. Hospitals, many of which are large and well financed, now dominate the facilities that qualify for this program, and this shift has led to controversy over the program’s purpose, effects, and incentives. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) took recent actions to rein in the program, and these actions are now facing court challenges.

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