Sen. Chuck Grassley welcomed an expression of concern and a commitment to produce records on the misclassification of EpiPen under the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program from Seema Verma, nominee to serve as administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Grassley has pressed CMS for documentation and answers on why EpiPen was misclassified, resulting in overcharges of potentially hundreds of millions of dollars to states and taxpayers. CMS under the Obama Administration claimed to have taken action on the misclassification but has never produced any documentation of action, despite Grassley’s multiple requests. Grassley asked Verma about the issue at her nomination hearing before the Finance Committee. He made the following comment.
“Ms. Verma committed to working with me to produce all documentation between CMS and Mylan regarding the EpiPen misclassification if she’s confirmed. She called the misclassification ‘very disturbing’ and said Medicaid programs that are financially struggling could have benefited from the rebates they were owed. She said that if confirmed, she’d like to review the processes in place to ensure that misclassifications don’t happen again. I welcome her commitment to provide documents and to review the misclassification problem. Participating in government programs requires following the rules, and the agencies in charge are responsible for enforcing the rules. The Obama Administration dropped the ball here. The new Administration has the chance to pick up the ball, hold drug companies accountable, and respond to congressional oversight inquiries in a timely, thorough way.”