Trending News Today: Kentucky Launches Investigation Into PBM Practices

Top news of the day from across the health care industry.

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear announced an investigation into allegations that pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) overcharged state health insurance programs for drugs and discriminated against independent pharmacies, Reuters reported. According to the article, a recently-released report indicated that 2 PBMs took in $123.5 million last year from Kentucky’s Medicaid program by paying pharmacies a lower rate to fill prescriptions and charged the state more. Beshear said in a statement that he was seeking details on how PBMs determined, billed, and paid drug reimbursement rates over the past 5 years, the article reported.

New poll data indicate that Americans increasingly want greater government spending on health care, The Associated Press reported. According to the article, an analysis of data from the General Social Survey showed that 7 in 10 consider the government’s spending on improving national health to be too low, up from 62% in 2016. The poll found 80% of Democrats indicated there is too little spending and 59% of Republicans said the same, both up from 2014, the article reported.

Novo Nordisk filed for FDA approval of oral semaglutide, as well as for a new cardiovascular (CV) indication for a once-per-week injectable form of semaglutide, The American Journal of Managed Care reported. According to the article, if approved, oral semaglutide would be the first glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist in a pill form. For oral semaglutide, Novo Nordisk submitted 2 new drug applications, one of which seeks approval to control blood glucose in type 2 diabetes and another indication to reduce major adverse CV events in adults with type 2 diabetes and established CV diseases, the article reported.