Drug Channels comments on CMS's report on Medicare Part D and DIR

According to Drug Channels, the CMS report will change the way the industry and consumers deal with rebates.
According to Drug Channels, the CMS report will change the way the industry and consumers deal with rebates. | Contributed image

Drug Channels, a website providing expert insights on pharmaceutical economics and the drug distribution system, recently commented on a new report from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, titled “Medicare Part D – Direct and Indirect Remuneration (DIR).”

“The report shows mixed consequences of DIRs in the Medicare Part D program,” Dr. Adam J. Fein of Drug Channels wrote. “For example, manufacturer rebates (the biggest part of DIRs) reduce plan costs and Part D premiums. However, beneficiaries pay higher out-of-pockets costs because coinsurance amounts are based on the undiscounted, pre-rebate retail price. Meanwhile, the government is paying a growing share of drug costs due to catastrophic coverage.”

According to Drug Channels, the CMS report will change the way the industry and consumers deal with rebates, gross-to-net discounts, plan premiums, and patients’ out-of-pocket expenses. Fein believes the report lays the groundwork for changing the Medicare part D program.

The CMS report came to three key conclusions – some beneficiaries could see higher out-of-pocket costs, Medicare liabilities are increasing while plan liabilities are shrinking, and plan premiums continue to remain stable.

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