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May 15, 2013

Cost Consequences of the 340B Drug Discount Program

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Section of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois (Dr Conti); and Health Outcomes Research Group, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York (Dr Bach).

JAMA. 2013;309(19):1995-1996. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.4156

Created in 1992, a little-known federal drug discount program called “340B” allowed a handful of hospitals that cared for the poor to obtain drugs for their patients at substantially reduced prices. Today, through a series of expansions, including some enumerated in the Affordable Care Act, numerous other types of entities such as community hospitals and cancer centers that serve both the poor and the well-insured can participate.1 Between 2009 and 2012 the number of enrolled hospitals doubled, and today the program includes 1679 hospitals, a third of all hospitals in the United States.2

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