House Dem Leaders Intro New Drug Price Legislation

July 26, 2023 by Dan McCue
House Dem Leaders Intro New Drug Price Legislation
Rep. Frank Pallone Jr., D-N.J.

WASHINGTON — A trio of House Democrats introduced legislation Wednesday that would extend the savings garnered by the federal government from negotiating prescription drug prices to all who are covered by private health plans.

The bill, called the Lowering Drug Costs for American Families Act, was introduced by Reps. Richard Neal, D-Mass., ranking member of the House Ways and Means Committee, Frank Pallone Jr., D-N.J., ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, and Robert Scott, D-Va., ranking member of the Workforce Committee.

In essence and intent, it is a follow-up to the Inflation Reduction Act, which last year granted the Health and Human Services secretary the authority to negotiate lower prescription drug prices for U.S. seniors.

In doing so, the act lifted restrictions that had been in place for nearly 20 years preventing Medicare from negotiating drug prices. 

The law also further reduced drug prices for seniors by penalizing pharmaceutical companies that raised prices faster than the rate of inflation. 

“The Inflation Reduction Act finally granted Medicare the power to negotiate lower prescription drug prices for seniors, however, the fight is not over,” Pallone said in a written statement. 

“The Lowering Drug Costs for American Families Act will build on this progress by providing those same lower negotiated prices to all Americans who are covered by private health plans. It also protects consumers against unfair price hikes and increases the number of drugs Medicare can negotiate on each year, meaning lower prices on more drugs sooner,” he said.

Specifically, the bill would:

  • Extend the historic drug price negotiation program to all Americans with private coverage. This includes over 164 million workers and their families who get health coverage through their jobs and more than 16 million individuals with Marketplace coverage.
  • Stop drug companies from raising prices faster than inflation by ensuring that the inflation rebates enacted under the Inflation Reduction Act also apply to individuals covered by private health plans.
  • Strengthen the drug price negotiation program to deliver more savings to the American people by increasing the annual number of prescription drugs selected for negotiation from 20 to 50.

“The skyrocketing cost of drugs is continuing to undermine the health and financial security of American consumers and taxpayers — who are routinely forced to pay far more for the same drugs as people in other countries,” said Scott. “Our economy bears the burden of high prescription drug costs. Employer-provided health plans spend billions of dollars every year to cover the cost of drugs.

“The American people have also made it clear that they want Congress to take action. This bill delivers on our promise to build upon the historic progress made by the Inflation Reduction Act and will allow us to further lower drug prices,” Scott said.

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and @DanMcCue

A+
a-
  • prescription drug prices
  • Richard Neal
  • Robert Scott
  • In The News

    Health

    Voting

    Prescription Drugs

    June 6, 2024
    by Tom Ramstack
    Federal Trade Commission Plans Effort Against Drug Patent Abuses

    WASHINGTON — Federal officials are discussing a strategy to block pharmaceutical companies from abusing patent rights that can keep drug... Read More

    WASHINGTON — Federal officials are discussing a strategy to block pharmaceutical companies from abusing patent rights that can keep drug prices high. The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee met with the chairwoman of the Federal Trade Commission Thursday to work on a plan to prevent... Read More

    What Do Weight Loss Drugs Mean for a Diet Industry Built on Eating Less and Exercising More?

    NEW YORK (AP) — Ever since college, Brad Jobling struggled with his weight, fluctuating between a low of 155 pounds... Read More

    NEW YORK (AP) — Ever since college, Brad Jobling struggled with his weight, fluctuating between a low of 155 pounds when he was in his 30s to as high as 220. He spent a decade tracking calories on WeightWatchers, but the pounds he dropped always crept... Read More

    April 24, 2024
    by Dan McCue
    FDA Approves New Treatment for Urinary Tract Infections

    WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration approved Pivya (pivmecillinam) tablets for the treatment of female adults with uncomplicated urinary... Read More

    WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration approved Pivya (pivmecillinam) tablets for the treatment of female adults with uncomplicated urinary tract infections.  “Uncomplicated UTIs are a very common condition impacting women and one of the most frequent reasons for antibiotic use,” said Dr. Peter Kim, M.S.,... Read More

    April 23, 2024
    by Beth McCue
    Study Finds Next-Gen Antibiotics Underutilized

    WASHINGTON — A new study conducted by researchers at the National Institutes of Health found clinicians frequently continue to treat... Read More

    WASHINGTON — A new study conducted by researchers at the National Institutes of Health found clinicians frequently continue to treat antibiotic-resistant infections with older generic antibiotics considered to be less effective and less safe than newer ones. Researchers examined the factors influencing doctors’ preference for older... Read More

    April 17, 2024
    by Dan McCue
    Eli Lilly Obesity Drug Appears to Ease Sleep Apnea Symptoms in Trials

    WASHINGTON — A pair of yearlong clinical trials conducted by the drug maker Eli Lilly appear to show that its... Read More

    WASHINGTON — A pair of yearlong clinical trials conducted by the drug maker Eli Lilly appear to show that its obesity drug, Zepbound, can provide considerable relief to overweight people who have sleep apnea. Though the findings have yet to be published in a peer-reviewed medical... Read More

    Many Cancer Drugs Remain Unproven Five Years After Accelerated Approval, a Study Finds

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s accelerated approval program is meant to give patients early access to promising drugs. But how often... Read More

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s accelerated approval program is meant to give patients early access to promising drugs. But how often do these drugs actually improve or extend patients’ lives? In a new study, researchers found that most cancer drugs granted accelerated approval do not demonstrate such... Read More

    News From The Well
    scroll top