|ARRAY BIOPHARMA INC filed this Form 10-K on 08/11/2017|
providing stronger monitoring and enforcement by the DOC and FTC, and making commitments on the part of public authorities regarding access to information. U.S. companies are able to certify to the DOC their compliance with the privacy principles of the Privacy Shield since August 1, 2016. In December 2015, a proposal for an EU General Data Protection Regulation, intended to replace the current EU Data Protection Directive, was agreed between the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission. The EU General Data Protection Regulation, which was officially adopted in April 2016 and will be applicable in May 2018, will introduce new data protection requirements in the EU, as well as substantial fines for breaches of the data protection rules. The EU General Data Protection Regulation will increase our responsibility and liability in relation to any personal data that we process, and we may be required to put in place additional mechanisms to ensure compliance with the new EU data protection rules.
Failure to comply with U.S. and international data protection laws and regulations could result in government enforcement actions (which could include civil and/or criminal penalties), private litigation and/or adverse publicity and could negatively affect our operating results and business. Moreover, patients about whom we or our partners obtain information, as well as the providers who share this information with us, may have contractual rights that limit our ability to use and disclose the information. Claims that we have violated individuals' privacy rights or breached our contractual obligations, even if we are not found liable, could be expensive and time-consuming to defend and could result in adverse publicity that could harm our business.
United States Healthcare Reform
In March 2010, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, together the Healthcare Reform Act, was adopted in the U.S. This law substantially changes the way healthcare is financed by both governmental and private insurers, and significantly impacts the pharmaceutical industry. The Healthcare Reform Act contains a number of provisions that are expected to impact our business and operations, in some cases in ways we cannot currently predict. Changes that may affect our business if we or our partners commercialize our products in the future include those governing enrollment in federal healthcare programs, reimbursement changes, rules regarding prescription drug benefits under the health insurance exchanges, and fraud and abuse and enforcement. In addition, continued implementation of the Healthcare Reform Act may result in the expansion of new programs such as Medicare payment for performance initiatives, and may impact existing government healthcare programs, such as by improving the physician quality reporting system and feedback program.
Additional provisions of the Healthcare Reform Act may negatively affect our revenues from products that we or our partners commercialize in the future. For example, as part of the Healthcare Reform Act's provisions closing a coverage gap that currently exists in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program, manufacturers of branded prescription drugs are required to provide a 50% discount on branded prescription drugs dispensed to beneficiaries within this coverage gap. Medicare Part D is a prescription drug benefit available to all Medicare beneficiaries. It is a voluntary benefit that is implemented through private plans under contractual arrangements with the federal government. Similar to pharmaceutical coverage through private health insurance, Part D plans negotiate discounts from drug manufacturers and pass on some of those savings to Medicare beneficiaries. The Healthcare Reform Act also makes changes to the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program, discussed in more detail below, including increasing the minimum rebate from 15.1% to 23.1% of the average manufacturer price for most innovator products. On February 1, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, or CMS, the federal agency that administers the Medicare and Medicaid programs, issued final regulations to implement the changes to the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program under the Health Reform Act. These regulations became effective on April 1, 2016.
Many of the Healthcare Reform Act's most significant reforms did not take effect until 2014 or thereafter, and the resulting new programs and requirements will continue to evolve in the next few years. Some states have chosen not to expand their Medicaid programs by raising the income limit to 133% of the federal poverty level. In part because not all states have expanded their Medicaid programs, it is unclear whether there will be more uninsured patients than anticipated when Congress passed the Healthcare Reform Act. For each state that has opted not to expand its Medicaid program, there will be fewer insured patients overall. An increase in the proportion of uninsured patients who are prescribed products resulting from our proprietary or partnered programs could impact the future sales of any products that are commercialized in the future and our business and results of operations.