NPC in the News

NPC serves as a trusted resource on issues related to biopharmaceutical innovation, patient access, the value of medicines, and more. See below for recent articles citing NPC's research and expertise. 

J.P. Morgan 2024: Optimism With An Undercurrent Of Tension

Scrip Citeline Commercial | January 10, 2024

At #JPM2024, NPC President and CEO John O'Brien spoke with Jessica Merrill of Scrip Citeline Commercial and shared the importance of innovation in how we pay for medicines in this golden age of innovation, saying:

“The ability to not just treat unmet need but potentially have durable treatments or cures is a really big deal...Unfortunately, we are trying to pay for those therapies with the reimbursement system that was created for statins and blood pressure drugs. We need as much innovation in reimbursement as we have in pharmaceutical technology, and that is going to take everybody working together.”

Subscribers can read here.


Health care outlook 2024: John O’Brien, president and CEO, NPC

Chain Drug Review | January 9, 2024

In a commentary for Chain Drug Review, NPC's John O'Brien highlights key health policy issues to watch in 2024 - including the IRA's Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Program, state-based Patient Drug Affordability Boards (PDABs), and reforms related to 340B and PBMs. He noted that each issue underscores the need for trusted evidence and research to inform decisions that benefit patients.  

Read here


Value viewpoint – recent developments in US healthcare value and access with Kimberly Westrich

The Evidence Base | Nov - Dec 2023 Issue

NPC's Kimberly Westrich discussed the recent updates in US healthcare value and access during an interview with The Evidence Base

Read the interview here


Patti Peeples speaks with Kimberly Westrich

The Evidence Base | December 6, 2023

In The Evidence Base's latest episode of "Patti’s People," Patti Peeples speaks with NPC's Kimberly Westrich about value assessment, including how ICER’s frameworks are being used by payers, approaches to valuing cell and gene therapies, and CMS' implementation of the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Program. 

Watch here


Kimberly Westrich joins NPC as chief strategy officer

Politico Influence | December 6, 2023

News of Kimberly Westrich's return to NPC as Chief Strategy Officer was featured in Politico

Read here


‘Alternative’ Model For Patient Assistance Draws Stakeholder Ire

Specialty Pharmacy Continuum | November 20, 2023

In this article about alternative funding programs (also called specialty drug cost containment models), NPC President and CEO, John M. O'Brien, PharmD, MPH, discussed the risks to individual patient access and the health system.

Read the article


POC for Verve? Plus IRA & East-West deals

BioCentury This Week Podcast | November 13, 2023

In BioCentury Inc's latest podcast episode, Steve Usdin and Jeff Cranmer discuss the NPC study published in Health Affairs Forefront examining the potential unintended consequences of the IRA’s drug pricing provisions. The conversation about the study, led by NPC's John O'Brien, Julie Patterson and James Motyka, starts at 7:05.

Listen here


Senate Finance Committee Republicans Oppose CMS Plan to Redefine Medicaid Best Price

340B News | November 7, 2023

NPC's John O'Brien shared perspectives with the 340B Report's Tom Mirga about CMS' proposal to redefine Medicaid Best Price, which is used to calculate 340B discounts and is included in CMS' Medicaid Drug Rebate Program (MDRP) proposed regulation. John O'Brien in the 340B Report


Read here (subscription required 🔒) 


Requiring Transparency and Value-Based Care in the Pharmaceutical Industry

The Real Chemistry Podcast | October 26, 2023
In this discussion, NPC's John O'Brien and Real Chemistry's Jim Weiss focus on the growing government role in drug pricing, the rise in patient out-of-pocket costs, and the importance of health policy research in guiding policy. 

Listen here


ICER’s Faux Updates

Healthcare Policy Pop Podcast | OCT. 5, 2023

NPC's John O'Brien discussed the latest changes to ICER's value assessment framework with Healthcare Policy Pop, a podcast by Patients Rising Now. In the conversation, he highlights the reasons why ICER's latest framework may hinder patient access to care. Healthcare Policy Pop also cited NPC's statement on ICER's updates in the resources they highlighted for their September 28th episode featuring a discussion on ICER's work.

Listen to the episode


Uncertainties Still Loom Over IRA Negotiations

AIS Health, September 7, 2023

NPC's John O'Brien and Julie Patterson highlighted the unknowns that remain around the implementation of the IRA’s drug-related provisions. 

Read here


Restricted access to specialty drugs on the rise: What employers, advisors need to know

Benefits Pro, August 31, 2023

NPC's Rochelle Henderson spoke with Benefits Pro about the study published in Health Affairs Scholar demonstrating that health plans are increasingly restrictive when covering specialty medicines.  

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Drugmakers, investors say they've already changed bets in IRA's first year

Axios, August 29, 2023

Healthcare reporter Tina Reed quoted NPC's John O'Brien in her story of CMS's newly-announced price negotiations drug list.

Read here


Biden Administration targets drugs from J&J, Merck for controversial Medicare price negotiations

Yahoo Finance, August 29, 2023

Senior finance reporter, Anjalee Khemlani cited NPC's John O'Brien in her coverage of CMS's announcement, "Many important questions related to patient input, patient access and negotiated formularies, and therapeutic alternatives remain unanswered even as the process begins in earnest. There are also significant unintended consequences that are not yet well understood, such as how this process may create perverse incentives delaying launches, reducing subsequent indications, and chilling evidence generation."

Read here


Pharmaceutical industry rips 'draconian' price negotiation provision

Fierce Healthcare, August 29, 2023

Reporter Noah Tong quoted NPC's John O'Brien in his coverage of CMS's price negotiations list, "There are also significant unintended consequences that are not yet well understood, such as how this process may create perverse incentives delaying launches, reducing subsequent indications and chilling evidence generation.”

Read here


IRA drug list underscores challenges for industry

BioCentury, August 29, 2023

NPC's John O'Brien shared insights with reporter Steve Usdin. 


Subscribers can read the full story


From Enemy Territory? NPC Nabs Ex-ICER VP

Pink Sheet, August 11, 2023

Sarah Karlin-Smith's article spotlights NPC's expanded leadership team.

Subscribers can read here


NPC adds executive leaders, names Dr. Jon Campbell as chief science officer

Chain Drug Review, July 31, 2023

News of two additions to the NPC leadership team - Jon Campbell, PhD, MS as Chief Science Officer and Michael Pratt as Chief Communications Officer - was featured in this article, as well as in Politico Playbook.

Read the article in Chain Drug Review


Senate Targets Pharmacy Middlemen Amid Drug Price Deal Talks

Bloomberg Law, July 26, 2023

This article examines the Senate Finance Committee's work to address the practices of pharmacy benefit managers and includes perspective from NPC's John O'Brien. 

Read here


10 Takeaways from LDI’s Drug Pricing Conference

Penn LDI, May 17, 2023

This recap of Penn LDI's Health Care Drug Pricing Conference quotes NPC's Dr. O'Brien discussing the potential harms of the drug pricing provisions in the Inflation Reduction Act. He says, “I feel like we’re really close to hitting an artery. What is this going to do to innovation and development?"

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PBMs, the Brokers Who Control Drug Prices, Finally Get Washington's Attention

Kaiser Health News, May 11, 2023

NPC weighs in on efforts to address the opaque practices of pharmacy benefit managers. 

Read here


Co-Pay Assistance Works, and It's More Needed than Ever

Chain Drug Review, April 24, 2023

In this commentary, NPC's John M. O'Brien examines co-pay accumulators and the risks of benefit manager and insurance plan policies deterring adherence to medicines people need.

Read here

No Time to Be Complacent: Continuous Reform Needed to Achieve Pharmacoequity

The American Journal of Managed Care, March 24, 2023

Read here


It's Not Just the P&T Committee. Payers Are Putting Value Assessment Committees, Filters on Drug Coverage Decisions

Managed Healthcare Executive, March 22, 2023

Read here


The President’s victory lap on the success of price controls is premature 

Sarasota Herald-Tribune, March 18, 2023

In this commentary, NPC's John M. O’Brien discusses the potential effects of new price controls and what the future holds for Medicare.

Read here


President Biden’s Proposal To Expand Medicare Price Controls A Sign Of Things To Come

Pink Sheet, March 8, 2023

Read here


Health Affairs Spending Council Releases Its Road Map For Action

Health Affairs Forefront, February 8, 2023

Read here


ICER: Majority of Payer Coverage Policies Support 'Key Elements of Fair Access' in Formularies

Endpoints News, January 17, 2023

(subscription required 🔒) Read here


    Additional Coverage

    Read more NPC in the News

    Podcast: The Myth of Average: Time for Change

    AiArthritis Voices Podcast, April 3, 2022

    Tiffany Westrich-Robertson, CEO of AiArthritis and a person living with non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis, speaks with NPC's John O'Brien about the topic of the importance of innovation and treatment access in this podcast episode. 

    Listen now

    AMCP 2022: High Out-of-Pocket Costs Are Associated with Nonadherence Among Patients Taking Oral Cancer Drugs

    Managed Healthcare Executive, March 31, 2022

    This articles describes NPC-sponsored research presented at the AMCP annual meeting that shows that almost half of cancer patients on oral therapies are nonadherent.

    Read here

    Price Transparency Healthcare Policies Reduce Out-Of-Pocket Costs

    PharmaNewsIntelligence, March 18, 2022

    NPC President and CEO John M. O'Brien weighs in on issues around the importance of price transparency in health care and reducing patient out-of-pocket costs to improve access to medicines.

    National Pharmaceutical Council Executive to Give Hartman Lecture

    The Oxford Eagle (Miss.), March 8, 2022

    The local Oxford, Miss., newspaper reports on NPC President and CEO John M. O’Brien presenting the annual Charles W. Hartman Memorial Lecture on Friday, March 11, at the University of Mississippi.

    ICER to Develop Annual Drug Price Hike Reports For California

    InsideHealthPolicy, March 4, 2022 (subscription required)

    An article about the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) developing two reports for California cites NPC's concerns about ICER's flawed report methodology and notes that NPC President and CEO John O'Brien cautioned health policymakers in California against using the reports for policies that could harm patients.

    Adopting Good Practices for High-Deductible Health Plans Can Help Employers Build Better Health Benefits

    American Journal of Accountable Care, March 4, 2022

    NPC and Gallagher Research & Insights discuss results from a survey demonstrating that employers are receptive to the idea of adopting good practices for health savings account-eligible high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) and, in many cases, are already implementing them. 

    Experts Discuss How Employers Can Take on HSA HDHP Challenges While Encouraging Value-Based Care

    American Journal of Managed Care, February 20, 2022

    AJMC provides highlights from part 2 of a two-part webinar series, hosted by the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions and moderated by NPC's Kimberly Westrich, focused on employer opportunities for improving value and crafting smarter deductibles in HSA-eligible HDHPs.

    9 Employer Best Practices for High Deductible Health Plan Design

    HealthPayerIntelligence, February 16, 2022

    This article focuses on the recent report from NPC and Gallagher Research & Insights on ways employers can more effectively implement high-deductible health plans.

    How Employers Can Leverage Value, Health Equity Incentives to Address Health Plan Affordability Concerns

    American Journal of Managed Care, February 6, 2022

    AJMC provides highlights from part 1 of a two-part webinar series, hosted by the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions and featuring NPC's Kimberly Westrich, addressing issues in health care coverage affordability and how equitable health benefits and value-based design can reduce cost while improving employee engagement.

    The Myth of Average: Why Individual Patient Differences Matter

    American Journal of Managed Care, January 19, 2022

    AJMC featured on its website NPC's newly updated booklet The Myth of Average: Why Individual Patient Differences Matter, which explores the barriers patients face when navigating the health care system.

    New CMS Rule Fails to Fix Medicaid Best Price

    BioCentury (subscription required), January 14, 2022

    NPC's Health Affairs Forefront article "Medicaid Best Price Volatility Could Inhibit Payment Innovation" was featured in this BioCentury piece on Medicaid best price legislation impeding patient access to expensive gene therapies.

    Addressing Access Burdens

    Pharmaceutical Executive, January 11, 2022

    NPC President and CEO John M. O'Brien discusses the increasing barriers for patients to receiving needed therapies and how pharmaceutical companies are reaching out to employers directly to talk about health benefits. 

    Video: Kimberly Westrich on Micro-, Macro-Level Approaches to Improve Value-Based Benefit Design

    American Journal of Managed Care, January 6, 2022

    The final video in a four-part series with NPC Vice President of Health Services Research Kimberly Westrich addresses future opportunities for growth regarding value-based benefits. View part onepart two, and part three of the video series. 

    Pharmacy Outlook: John O’Brien, NPC

    Chain Drug Review, January 3, 2022

    To kick off the new year, NPC's John M. O’Brien writes in Chain Drug Review about the need for a more informed public discussion about the role that prescription drugs play in our health care system and in improving the lives of patients.