On Thursday, the Federal Trade Commission voted 2-2 against studying how the business practices of pharmacy benefit managers effect independent pharmacies.
Commissioners Noah Phillips and Christine Wilson, who were both appointed by former President Donald Trump, voted against the study, arguing it should be more focused on consumers.
The vote came after nearly two hours of testimony from independent pharmacies and advocates who claimed that PBM business practices have hurt their businesses and led to closures across the country. No one testified on the behalf of PBMs.
"I believe it is vital to launch this study," said FTC Chair Lina Khan, who was appointed by President Joe Biden. "We have an imperative to better understand and, ultimately, tackle anticompetitive conduct that may be contributing to sky-high drug prices and the decline of independent pharmacies."
PBMs have faced scrutiny in recent years from Congress, state legislatures, providers and patient advocates as they look for ways to bring down drug prices.
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