The National Association of Blue Shield Plans urged Congress to allow a greater role for the private sector in running medicare and medicaid.
Testifying before the Senate Finance Committee, Ira C. Layton, MD, vice chairman of the Association's board of trustees, said every effort must be made to simplify the federal programs through administrative changes and greater use of private carriers.
The committee has closed its hearings on the House-passed social security amendments bill and is now considering it behind closed doors.
The Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association criticized the bill introduced by Committee Chairman Russell Long (D, La) to establish a national formulary to fix prices for drugs purchased with federal funds. Long said he might amend the controversial measure to postpone the effective date for three years and to allow federal reimbursement for any product prescribed by generic name accompanied by that of the manufacturer. As originally written, the measure