Legislative Update: Week of February 3, 2020

Feb 03, 2020


The Joint Committee on Health Care Financing heard testimony on Governor Baker’s health care bill, House Bill 4134, an act to improve health care by investing in VALUE, on Tuesday. MassBio President and CEO Bob Coughlin submitted written testimony on this bill in response to the drug industry provisions outlined.

On Wednesday, State Representative and House Ways and Means Chairman Aaron Michlewitz received the 2019 Legislator of the Year Award at MassBio’s Annual Policy Leadership Breakfast.

The Trump Administration on Thursday released a new Medicaid block grant plan that would let states that have expanded Medicaid coverage under the ACA close the prescription drug formulary in Medicaid in exchange for capping the federal funding they receive for their Medicaid programs. The plan would require states to still cover one drug per class and all drugs for certain diseases, but would give state Medicaid programs the discretion to deny coverage for all other drugs if they chose.  


The Massachusetts Health Policy Commission (HPC) holds its board meeting on Wednesday where they are expected to release and vote on the proposed regulations governing their new authority to review pharmaceutical manufacturers’ pricing practices, as authorized by the FY2020 Budget. Finalized regulations for the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) are expected to be released later in February.

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