Accession Number:



DOD and VA Pharmacy: Progress and Remaining Challenges in Jointly Buying and Mailing Out Drugs

Descriptive Note:

[Technical Report, Congressional Report]

Corporate Author:

United States General Accounting Office

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



In fiscal year 2000, the Department of Veterans Affairs VA and the Department of Defense DOD together spent about 3.2 billion on prescription drugs for beneficiaries. Reflecting national trends, VA and DOD drug expenditures have risen significantly, consuming an increasing percentage of their health care budgets. Newly legislated initiatives are projected to further boost DODs annual drug costs by 800 million in fiscal year 2002. To help control these expenditures, VA and DOD have separately and, more recently, jointly contracted for pharmaceuticals to obtain large discounts from drug manufacturers.1 Considerable leverage can be exerted when the departments commit to buy increased volumes of a particular drug when there are generic drugs or brand name drugs2 that are interchangeable in efficacy, safety, and outcomes. The departments ability to commit to jointly buy more of a particular drug depends largely on their ability to influence provider prescribing practices through the use of formularies.3

Subject Categories:

  • Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies
  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Pharmacology

Distribution Statement:

[A, Approved For Public Release]