We, the undersigned 58 organizations, on behalf of millions of patients and American consumers who live with complex conditions such as HIV, autoimmune diseases, cancer, diabetes, lupus, multiple sclerosis, and hepatitis, write in response to the Request for Information Regarding Reporting on Pharmacy Benefits and Prescription Drug Costs. The patients we represent rely on prescription drugs to treat their health conditions and prevent others. We are pleased that the Biden administration is moving forward with the requirement that insurance plans must report on various data points associated with prescription drug spending. We believe with this greater understanding and transparency of prescription drug costs, you can better implement policies and measures that increase competition, improve prescription drug affordability and access for the American people.
The undersigned 67 public health, HIV, hepatitis, and STD community-based organizations, along with providers, community health centers, and advocacy organizations are writing to urge you to change a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) policy that can immediately help increase access to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for the prevention of HIV. We ask the CDC to reverse its current prohibition and allow recipients of all HIV prevention funds to pay for PrEP ancillary services such as laboratory services for PrEP screening and monitoring.
As our country continues to respond and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, which has impacted HIV and hepatitis services, we know we have the science to end two other infectious diseases that have been impacting our country for decades: HIV and hepatitis C. While there still is no cure or vaccine for HIV, we have preventive tools along with treatments that suppress the virus, and together can bring the number of new infections down to a point that we can end HIV.
We urge Congress to capitalize on the expertise of the community health centers as part of the EHE initiative so that we can expand PrEP and PrEP-related services by increasing funding from the current $102 million to $152 million, as proposed by President Biden’s FY2022 budget.
The HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute and others are requesting that CMS update the HCV screening National Coverage Determination to bring it in line with the 2020 U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendation for HCV screening. The current coverage determination only requires Medicare coverage for HCV screening of baby boomers and people at high risk. We are requesting that Medicare should cover screening of everyone between the ages of 18-79, regardless of symptoms or risk group.