ARTICLE | Company News

GSK, Merck halt copay coupons for ACA plans

March 28, 2014 12:50 AM UTC

GlaxoSmithKline plc (LSE:GSK; NYSE:GSK) and Merck & Co. Inc. (NYSE:MRK) said they are not redeeming copay coupons for patients enrolled in plans on the Affordable Care Act's health exchanges. In separate statements, both companies cited existing HHS guidance as motivating the decisions and emphasized non-acceptance of coupons "currently" or "at this time," signaling the policies could change with clarity from HHS.

Late last year, CMS and HHS created confusion around the issue of third-party payments for plans through the exchanges, with an HHS letter indicating coupons would be allowed followed by a statement in which CMS said it "discourages" them. In February, CMS said in a memo that plans on ACA exchanges are "encouraged" to accept payments from some third parties but did not address copay assistance provided by drug companies (see BioCentury Nov. 11, 2013). ...