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Report: Low Compliance with ACA Charity Care Requirements among 340B Hospitals

April 27, 2016
Earlier this week, the Alliance for Integrity and Reform of 340B, of which BIO is a member, released a new report examining hospitals’ compliance with the charity care requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The report found that large numbers of both 340B and non-340B hospitals are not complying with protections contained in the ACA for low-income patients, such as rules designed to ensure they are made aware of a hospital’s charity care program and are not charged excessive amounts for hospital care.

The report expands on a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine last year, and assessed compliance rates between 2012 and 2013 at 1,723 340B and non-340B hospitals. Among the key findings:

  • Only 37 percent of 340B hospitals reduced their charges for patients eligible for charity care in 2013

  • Only 60 percent of 340B hospitals regularly notified patients of potential charity care eligibility before collecting payments in 2013

“The 340B program was created to provide a safety net for America’s most vulnerable patients, so it is concerning to see 340B hospitals falling short of meeting some of the protections created in the ACA for our poorest and most vulnerable citizens. The protections in the ACA are similar to those the 340B grantees are already meeting, begging the question of whether the current 340B eligibility rules for hospitals are targeting true safety net facilities,” said Stephanie Silverman, spokesperson for AIR340B in a release. “Reform is needed to ensure needy patients, not hospitals, are the ones benefiting from this important program.”

View the full report here.