WASHINGTON, DC – President Trump made good on his campaign promise to address the issue of skyrocketing prescription drug prices with decisive action yesterday by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Inspector General Daniel Levinson. A proposed rule change will help lower prescription drug prices by encouraging drug manufacturers to offer discounts directly to patients.
AMAC notes how the present drug pricing system has drug companies offering rebates and other payments to Pharmacy Benefit Mangers (PBMs) with virtually no discounts or cost savings passed to seniors. The present drug pricing system actually rewards higher drug prices, benefits middlemen, and needlessly drives up patients’ costs. The new rule would create more competition between drug companies and allow for lower prices and reduced out-of-pocket costs to be passed directly to patients.
According to HHS, the new proposal, “…would expressly exclude from safe harbor protection under the Anti-Kickback Statute rebates on prescription drugs paid by manufacturers to pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), Part D plans and Medicaid managed care organizations.”
AMAC applauds a bold, long overdue move to help seniors who bear the brunt of high drug costs. The seniors organization will submit comments in support in support of the proposed rule on behalf of its 1.6 million members throughout the nation.
“This new rule breaks open a decades old, secret drug pricing system that benefits big drug companies, PBMs and others at the expense of seniors,” said Weber. “We fully support changes to allow drug discounts to be offered directly to seniors and begin a new era of transparency to a dark, corrupt, backroom drug pricing system,” Weber added.
“AMAC urges Democrats and Republicans to work quickly and collectively to support the effort to address unreasonably high prescription drug prices. This proposal represents the most significant change to a broken drug pricing system in our history,” Weber said.
The Trump Administration has also called for additional ways to address high drug prices including a requirement to list drug prices in TV ads, increasing discounts within Medicare, and promoting lower cost generic drugs.
Read the HHS discount policy fact sheet here: https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/20190131-fact-sheet.pdf
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