MedPAC Questions Pricing Index Proposal for Medicare Part D Drugs

January 9, 2019

The Medicare Payment Advisory Committee (MedPAC), an independent congressional agency, joined critics of the HHS proposal to link Medicare Part B drug pricing to prices in other countries.

MedPAC Chairman Francis J. Crosson welcomed efforts to get the best value possible for Medicare,” but said elements of the plan to use an International Pricing Index (IPI) may not be feasible.

For the pricing model to be viable, Crosson said in a comment on the HHS notice, the private vendors the program would pay for Part B drugs would need to negotiate substantial price discounts from drugmakers as the Medicare payment amount is lowered to levels closer to international prices. But the vendors would lack important pharmacy management tools such as a formulary and prior authorization.

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