220503 Comments RFI PBM Practices FTC
May 03, 2022
The U.S. Chamber submitted comments to the Federal Trade Commission in response to its Solicitation for Public Comments on the Impact of Pharmacy Benefit Managers. The Chamber expressed three major points in the comments:
- First, the FTC should analyze PBMs in an objective and empirical manner consistent with past reviews. It is critical that the FTC always conduct evaluations without bias and simply assess and follow the facts to draw conclusions from any analysis. During the past two decades, and under the leadership of both Republican and Democratic Chairs, the FTC has repeatedly examined PBMs and found that they can enhance consumer welfare.
- Second, and relatedly, the Chamber has serious concerns that the FTC’s current Solicitation is structured to elicit biased information about PBM business practices, their impact on patients, physicians, employers, and independent and chain pharmacies. Almost every single question appears to presuppose negative intent and actions. The Chamber strongly encourages the FTC to evaluate all facets of PBMs, including their benefits to consumers, plan sponsors, and other entities in the health care ecosystem.
- Third, the FTC should ensure that it conducts a comprehensive evaluation before proposing new regulations of PBMs. During the past two decades, the FTC has repeatedly and rightly warned other policymakers against regulating PBMs in ways that, while perhaps well-intended, likely would harm competition and lead to higher prices for consumers. The FTC’s current inquiry should lead to a public report that then could form the basis for a policy discussion and recommendations, rather than to direct regulatory action.