Congress considers legislation to reform prescription drug pricing
The U.S. already spends more on prescription drugs than other countries and drug costs are expected to increase faster than other areas of health-related spending over the next decade.
Prescription drug reforms in the Biden administration’s Build Back Better Act aim to alleviate these rising costs. What proposals are lawmakers considering and what is their likelihood of passage?
PBS reports that starting in 2024, the bill would cap seniors’ annual out of pocket costs at $2,000. Insulin prices paid out of pocket would be capped at $35 for a 30-day supply starting in 2023.
How does drug pricing work now? What impact do prescription costs have on overall consumer health costs and outcomes? What about patients who don’t have health insurance?
What are the pros and cons of price caps and other proposed reforms? How would they affect insurance markets and pharmaceutical innovation? What other factors and potential implications should be considered?
What rules and regulations are currently in place or could be imposed to ensure all Americans can afford the medications they need?
- Inmaculada Hernandez Y Delso, PharmD, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Science at UC San Diego
- Ed Silverman, senior writer and Pharmalot columnist for STAT News who has covered the pharmaceutical industry for two decades
- Richard Frank, Ph.D., senior fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution, director of the USC-Brookings Schaeffer Initiative for Health Policy, and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School
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*This interview was recorded on Thursday, Demember 2.