Tag: lobbyist

The End of Summer is the Right Time for Strategic Planning in the Healthcare and Life Sciences Industries

The end of summer is traditionally a slow time during the legislative calendar. Most of the state governments have adjourned and historically members of Congress escape the D.C heat to head back home to their districts. This time of year can be a great time for companies and organizations looking to get more involved with their legislators to contemplate a plan to introduce themselves to legislators in the district. Additionally, with the power in Congress potentially hanging in the balance due to the upcoming mid-term elections this coming November, opportunities abound for companies and organizations that are aggressive in proactive government affairs planning.

Seldom has there been a time of greater policy and regulatory change in healthcare. An active HHS Secretary has been pushing policies such as importation, greater Medicare negotiating power, which is being proposed through a possible merger of Medicare Parts B and D, utilization of step therapy protocols, investigation of Pharmacy Benefit Managers. In addition, an active FDA is pushing for greater generic utilization, challenges to drug pricing and friendlier biosimilar policies. The recent policy changes will have a lasting impact on the healthcare and life sciences industries, and typically state legislatures enact state laws that address the same topics and are often have substantial impact on Providers.

The last year has also witnessed CMS’ increasing reliance on issuing Requests For Information (RFIs). This rulemaking process involves a proposed rule from the agency outlining the regulation CMS is looking to either add or change. Proposed rule announcements are usually followed by a comment period, public workshops/hearings, a final comment period and then a final rule with effective date. The RFI process provides opportunities for the industry to comment on the technical aspects of a proposal. However, the Administration is using agencies like CMS to distribute RFIs as a way for the industry to guide the conversation on what should be included. This could provide your organization with another way to influence policy, giving you even more reasons to take this “quiet” time during the legislative calendar to contemplate strategy.

The end of summer should be used to evaluate every healthcare stakeholders’ priorities and to design a game plan for achieving government affairs strategies and results. Each company or organization should consider how it is positioned for the upcoming elections. Are you comfortable with how your state and federal government interests are being advocated? Is your company or association prepared for different policies if Democrats take control of a particular house of the legislature? Lastly, what has been your organization’s philosophy for government engagement? Have you let your industry competitors or trade associations take the lead? While you may indirectly benefit from these actions, you should consider how whether the discourse aligns with your interest. Consider getting more active with strategic consulting, lobbying, PAC formations or undergoing an aggressive issue management program.

Frier Levitt Government Affairs, LLC, works with all types of companies and organizations across the healthcare and life sciences spectrum to help them stay ahead of the market and avoid policy surprises on the state and federal level, ranging from issue management to active engagement such as RFIs. Contact us today to see how your company or organization can get started.

What You Need to Know About Lobbying Strategies: Cost, Organization Size, and Time

Lobbying strategies do not require an organization to have a large budget, to have reached a large critical mass size, or require enormous outlays of time to be effective.

When Healthcare and Life Sciences organizations looking to implement new industry programs or technology realize they will require either legislative or regulatory resources, they often assume that they do not have the budget required and/or their organization is not big enough to be “allowed” to engage in lobbying. Often these organizations attempt to engage with state for federal governments alone, only to end up frustrated by the amount of time and energy required and cynical about the likelihood of success.

Before attempting the legislative or regulatory process, organizations should take into consideration:

Cost. The cost of the legislative or regulatory process and/or lobbying depends on an organization’s needs. A government affairs consultant can not only evaluate your needs and potential costs, but can also develop a customized strategy based on your needs and timeframe. Frier Levitt Government Affairs, LLC can develop strategies to meet any organization’s needs and budget.

Organization Size. An organization does not have to reach a critical mass before you are “allowed” to engage in lobbying. Governmental agencies certainly meet with huge groups, but just as much time is spent with small and medium sized constituents.  Just because an organization is small doesn’t mean its voice will not be heard. Working with a government affairs and lobbying company that not only has connections but also an extensive knowledge base can benefit any size organization.

Frier Levitt Government Affairs, LLC works in connection with Frier Levitt, LLC, a boutique healthcare firm with over 30 healthcare and life sciences attorneys, including many industry thought leaders. This allows Frier Government Affairs to help draft and lobby legislation and provide tools to make sure that your bill is properly transitioned from legislative to regulatory.

Time. Frier Levitt Government Affairs, LLC has well-established processes built on transparency and clear communication to assure your strategy is executed in the required timeframe. This includes building your strategy around anticipated deadlines, anticipating possible roadblocks and realistic advice to allow your organization to more freely understand how to use monetary resources effectively and make lobbying easy and efficient.

Frier Levitt Government Affairs offers lobbying strategies for organizations and budgets of all sizes. In addition to our experience in working with several state governments, we have experience dealing with Medicare/Medicaid reimbursement, PBM reform, patient protections, opioids and other controlled substances issues, as well as 340B. Contact us today for help getting your organization through legislative or regulatory process.