AMAC in the Media

AMAC Supports Bill to Reduce Drug Costs

Posted on Wednesday, January 3, 2024
AMAC Action
Concept of medicine and money

The intended effects of the DRUG Act are to stop the profiteering by opportunist pharmacy benefit managers and reduce drug costs for senior Americans who need them the most.

January 3, 2024

The Honorable Mariannette Miller-Meeks
1st Congressional District of Iowa
1034 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representative Miller-Meeks,

On behalf of the over 2.1 million members of AMAC – Association of Mature American Citizens, including over 5,600 members residing in IA-01, I write to offer our support for H.R. 6283, the “Delinking Revenue from Unfair Gouging (DRUG) Act.”

The practice of medical middlemen squeezing obscene profits out of senior Americans who depend on prescription medications to maintain a good quality of life must stop. These high costs force seniors to make difficult choices throughout their retirement years, like shopping for healthy groceries, paying utility bills, or traveling to see family because they need the money to pay for inflated prescription drug prices.

It’s not as if they can escape these costs by simply choosing another business to work with because only three large pharmacy benefit managers (PBM) “control 80% of the market for prescription drugs”[1]. The effects of increased drug prices, lack of affordable drug availability at local pharmacies, and the practice of restricting copay assistance programs have, in the most extreme cases, forced seniors to forego life affirming medicines [2]; ultimately exacerbating otherwise avoidable disease progression.

Your bill makes additions to four areas of law: the Public Health Service Act, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, and the Federal Employee Health Benefits Act. These additions restrict PBMs from charging more than a flat rate “bona fide” fee for their services. In addition, that fee cannot be based on the drug acquisition cost, fees or discounts, or amounts prohibited by the designated Secretaries of the federal government. The DRUG Act also prevents PBMs from driving patients to “in network” pharmacies and charging different pharmacies different amounts for the same drugs.

The intended effects of the DRUG Act are to stop the profiteering by opportunist PBMs and reduce drug costs for those senior Americans who need them the most.

AMAC thanks you, Representative Miller-Meeks, and your bipartisan cosponsors, for advancing H.R. 6283, the “DRUG Act”. AMAC is pleased to offer our organization’s full support for this important legislation.

Bob Carlstrom
AMAC Action

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