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Defending Affordable Drug Prices, Attorney General Jeff Landry Joins Bipartisan, Nationwide Coalition

BATON ROUGE, LA – Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry today joined Connecticut Attorney General William Tong and other state attorneys general in two amicus briefs defending affordable drug prices before the United States Courts of Appeals for the Third Circuit and District of Columbia.

The bipartisan, nationwide coalition of attorneys general are defending the actions of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in cases filed by Sanofi SA, Novartis Pharmaceutics, United Therapeutics Corp, and NovoNordisk. These pharmaceutical giants are accused of having refused to comply or unilaterally adopted unlawful restrictions on the 340B Program requiring discounted drug pricing for community health centers, clinics, and institutions serving low-income and underserved patient populations.

“Many of our neighbors rely upon affordable medicine to live, and drug companies who violate their obligations to these residents must be held accountable,” said Attorney General Landry. “The violation orders issued by HHS were lawful and necessary.”

The legal briefs filed by Landry, Tong, and 18 of their colleagues argue that for nearly two years, drug manufacturers participating in the 340B Program have flouted their statutory obligation to offer safety-net providers 340B-discounted prices on critical prescription drugs.

“These drug manufacturers have either limited 340B covered entities to using a single retail community pharmacy (contract pharmacy), or conditioned the use of multiple contract pharmacies on intrusive audits of healthcare providers’ confidential, proprietary claims data. Drug manufacturers allege that imposing conditions that restrict the use of contract pharmacies is appropriate because the term “pharmacy” is not in the text of the 340B statute and that such conditions are necessary to prevent drug diversion and duplicate reimbursement claims. But permitting manufacturers to unilaterally change the 340B Program is in direct contravention of the statute and policies long pursued by Congress and advanced by the States,” argue the state attorneys general.

The amicus briefs were filed by the attorneys general of Connecticut, Louisiana, Arkansas, Colorado, District of Columbia, Delaware, Illinois, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont. It is yet another bipartisan effort that Attorney General Landry has joined to reduce drug prices for Louisiana patients.