Ahead of the staggering changes brought about by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), many predicted that the need for manufacturer-funded Patient Assistance Programs would decline as patients received coverage from new government sources. Now that we are well into the ACA’s implementation, it’s clear how healthcare reform is impacting PAPs. Our latest blog post examines what changed and what hasn’t.
At last week’s 15th Annual Patient Assistance and Access Programs conference, I joined more than 400 industry experts to discuss the changing landscape of patient assistance. This is a hot topic that we’ve discussed here on the blog. It will continue to receive attention as the regulations are finalized.
There’s a lot of ambiguity around how the government is going to view the private and public exchanges. An OIG opinion providing guidance on whether these plans will be viewed as public versus private plans could have far-reaching implications for how manufacturers provide patient assistance. If we look at some of the OIG guidance offered around Medicare Part D plans and the potential for anti-kickback penalties when offering direct assistance to these beneficiaries, we can start to hypothesize about some of the challenges pharmaceutical manufacturers will face.
Copay programs may be one of the touchiest topics in the industry. Pharmaceutical Commerce recently published a special report titled “Copay programs' increased value to manufacturers is matched by rising criticism,” which details the issue from a variety of perspectives.