STAT+: HHS seeks to penalize another drugmaker amid legal clash over drug discount program

More than a dozen big drugmakers have curtailed the drug discounts or restricted the number of contract pharmacies that can distribute their medicines.

The U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration is seeking to penalize Boehringer Ingelheim for curtailing discounts to a federal program that provides medicines at reduced prices to hospitals and clinics serving low-income populations, the latest in a string of such notices.

The notice comes amid an ongoing clash over the 340B drug discount program, which requires drug companies to offer discounts that are typically estimated to be 25% to 50% — but could be higher — on all outpatient drugs to hospitals and clinics that primarily serve lower-income patients. There are approximately 12,400 entities participating in the program, a number that has grown substantially in recent years.

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