Hospital groups refile challenge to reverse 340B cuts

Hospital groups refiled a lawsuit seeking to reverse the Trump administration’s cuts to the 340B federal drug discount program.

In July, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals said the American Hospital Association (AHA) and other groups lacked standing to challenge the nearly 30 percent reduction in reimbursements, a ruling in line with a lower court decision from December. The cuts had not taken effect when the original suit was filed but began on Jan. 1.

The lawsuit comes from the AHA, the Association of American Medical Colleges, America’s Essential Hospitals and three individual hospital systems. The lawsuit argues that the 340B provisions of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ calendar year 2018 outpatient prospective payment system final rule, which reduced Medicare payments to certain hospitals for outpatient drugs purchased under the 340B program by $1.6 billion a year, violate the Administrative Procedure Act and exceed the agency’s statutory authority.

The hospital associations’ press release states, “Having filed claims that have progressed through the appeals process, the hospital plaintiffs have now addressed the court’s procedural concern, and with the hospital associations, [we] have refiled the lawsuit asking for expedited relief.”