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Amgen's Settlement
smartertimes.com

A front-page article highlights a provision in the fiscal cliff bill that gives the drug company Amgen two additional years to sell the medicine Sensipar under less restrictive Medicare reimbursement rules. It's a useful article in that it shines a light on this obscure provision and how it became law. But it has a few flaws.

"The bill gives Amgen an additional two years to sell Sensipar without government controls," the article says. That inaccurately suggests that no government controls at all apply. There are still plenty of government controls — the sales are subject to all the usual anti-fraud provisions, the FDA's rules, and Medicare's rules. They just aren't subject to inclusion in the new bundled payment system for kidney dialysis.

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Kevin Sack

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