Viewpoint: Writer addresses drug discount program
To the Editor:
In “Placing the health and well-being of patients first” (Viewpoint, Sept. 3), Monica Hilt and Bryan Pearce address a critical program intended for vulnerable patients in Wisconsin and across the country. The 340B drug discount program was created to help underserved patients access needed prescription medicines.
While some hospitals, like Ministry Saint Mary’s, may be using the 340B program as intended, it is evident that many are not. In fact, a recent report found disappointingly low charity care rates in many 340B hospitals. Hilt and Pearce counter that these hospitals provide higher levels of uncompensated care. That may be the case, but the program was not created to cover such costs, which include bad debt from privately insured patients.
The 340B program should be used as intended to help the most vulnerable patients access needed medicines. We support thoughtful reform so that the 340B program remains sustainable for the patients who need it the most.
Alliance for Integrity and Reform of 340B (AIR 340B)
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