Navigating State and Federal Issues in Pharmaceutical Policy


Together, U.S. states spend at least $25 billion annually on prescription drugs for their public employees, prisoners, Medicaid enrollees, and others. States are increasingly challenged by rising drug prices as well as their inability to predict costs for new drugs and price increases for older drugs. But states' efforts to pass laws and regulations to address these issues are sometimes stymied by federal laws and policies. The project team will help states identify and navigate the federal statutes, regulations, policies, guidance, and case law that could affect their ability to pursue policy options for lowering drug prices. This project builds on work conducted by the National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP) and funded by the Arnold Foundation to help states formulate drug pricing policy that lowers costs. Under this project, the team will focus on federal barriers to the 11 options identified in the 2016 NASHP report, States and the Rising Cost of Pharmaceuticals: A Call to Action. After describing federal impediments to state action on drug pricing, project staff will convene state and federal officials to respond to the findings and to discuss pathways to change in federal law or policy that would enable states to take actions described in the report. This work aims to broaden and deepen federal and state policymakers' knowledge of the options that are available to states to contain prescription drug prices. It will also help states understand how they can design pricing policies and programs that do not run afoul of certain federal laws, policies, and case law.

Grant Details

Grantee Organization:
Center for Health Policy Development (National Academy for State Health Policy)
Principal Investigator:
Jane Horvath
Award Amount:
Approval Date:
July 11, 2017

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