Brown Bagging, White Bagging, Clear Bagging

What is brown bagging?

Brown bagging refers to situations in which patients get a specialty medication from a specialty pharmacy outside of the hospital or provider’s office where it will be administered. The patient picks up the medication as they would for typical outpatient prescriptions (including payment of any out-of-pocket cost they are responsible for) and then brings it with them to the hospital or provider’s office to be administered.

What is white bagging?

White bagging is when a specialty pharmacy directly sends a medication for a specific patient to the providers office or hospital in order for it to be administered for that patient.

What is clear bagging?

Clear bagging is when a provider or hospital’s internal specialty pharmacy dispenses the patients medication and delivers it to where it will be administered to the patient.

In all of the above scenarios, the drug is being dispensed and reimbursed for in ways that are more comparable to outpatient prescriptions. Patients are on the hook for similar out-of-pocket costs as they would be in outpatient settings. Brown bagging, white bagging, and clear bagging have grown in popularity as payers look to reduce spend on drugs and better manage utilization, which is typically more difficult in traditional buy and bill scenarios.