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Drug Pricing Coalition Alert

Senate "Supplemental Emergency" Appropriations Bill Includes Language Canceling Discount Drug Pricing Program to State, County and Local Governments!

May 12, 1997

Section 323 of the Senate Supplemental Appropriations bill (S. 627) would repeal the federal cooperative purchasing program established under Section 1555 of the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994 (FASA).

This program would have allowed public hospitals, state and local health departments AND ADAP PROGRAMS to take advantage of even greater discounts than are now available to federally qualified health centers and some ADAP programs under the PHS 340-B pricing program. This would mean cost savings of between 31% and 62% on major HIV drugs. (Example: Crixivan 200 MG x 270, Average Wholesale Price $337.50, FASA Price $201.15 [40.40% savings]; Foscarnet 24MG/ML x 12x250M, AWP $879.30, FASA $525.84 [40.20% savings]; and AZT 100MG x 100, AWP $159.29, FASA $133.40. Equally impressive discounts would be available for drugs to treat other serious health conditions.

This program was subject to GAO and GSA studies before being implemented nationwide. Because neither GAO nor GSA has completed their studies, the Congressional committees with jurisdiction over this program have not yet scheduled hearings or received public comments.

THIS ACTION IS A SNEAK ATTACK BY THE PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY AND OTHER FEDERAL SUPPLIERS TO KILL THIS PROGRAM BEFORE IT HAS EVEN BEGUN! THIS COULD BE PARTICULARLY DISASTROUS AT A TIME WHEN ADAP PROGRAMS AND OTHER PUBLIC HEALTH SUPPLIERS ARE STRUGGLING UNDER THE BURDEN OF THE COSTS OF PROVIDING THE HIV STANDARD OF CARE! MISSISSIPPI ADAP, FOR EXAMPLE, IS NOW PLANNING TO REMOVE 640 OUT OF 800 PATIENTS FROM THEIR PROGRAM!

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What You Can Do:

Call or fax the following members of Congress and tell them to kill this sneak attack on FASA. They must allow GAO and GSA to complete their studies and then hold public hearings where groups like ours will be able to testify as to the urgent importance of these discount programs! You should also call or fax YOUR member of Congress to give them a heads up on this sneak attack!

(Congressperson, Staff Member, Phone/Fax: All area codes are 202)

Sen. Fred Thompson (R-TN), Ellen Brown, 224-4751/228-3679

Sen. John Glenn (D-OH), Brian Dettlebech, 224-2623/224-7983

Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK), Steve Cortese, 224-3471/224-2354

Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV), James English, 224-7200/224-8070

Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN), Bill O'Neil, 225-5074/225-0016

Rep. Steve Horn (R-CA), Mark Brasher, 225-5147/226-1012

Rep. Bob Livingston (R-LA), Jim Dwyer, 225-2771/225-0739

Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-AZ), Betsy Phillips, 225-5843/225-0398


For more information, contact:

Gary Rose of the AIDS Action Council (202/986-1300x3026)
OR Julie Rocchio of the National Association of Public Hospitals (202/624-7255).

AIDS Action Council
1875 Connecticut Avenue NW #700
Washington DC 20009
202-986-1300, extension 3053
202-986-1345 (fax)
202-332-9614 (tty)
E-Mail: aidsaction@aidsaction.org



  
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This article was provided by AIDS Action Council.
 
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