Federal Bipartisan Work Continues on PBM Oversight

Bipartisan leaders of the Senate Finance Committee are working on legislation targeting pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), the intermediaries in the prescription drug supply chain who negotiate discounts with drug companies on behalf of insurance plans. Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and his GOP counterpart Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) last Thursday released an outline of the issues they aim to tackle as they craft a bill this summer. The senators indicated they are concerned about the lack of transparency in the supply chain, business practices by large, concentrated PBM firms that drive up out-of-pocket costs for seniors, and “misaligned incentives” that make higher drug list prices translate into higher compensation for intermediaries. The committee held a hearing on PBMs and the prescription drug supply chain on March 30, 2023.