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Capitol Health Call
January 13, 2015

Clarification Needed on Medicare Part B Payment Policy

JAMA. 2015;313(2):124. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.17744

Medicare and most Medicaid programs and private insurers end up paying for compounded drugs administered in physicians’ offices, even though such drugs and some of their ingredients are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found in a report released November 10 (http://1.usa.gov/1sIty04).

Compounded drugs make up as much as 3% of the US prescription drug market, the GAO said. “Members of Congress have questioned whether federal health care programs’ payment practices create incentives for providers to prescribe these drugs,” according to the GAO.