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Press release
February 7, 2019

Statement on the introduction of the Medicare Negotiation and Competitive Licensing Act

Washington, DC - Today, Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) and Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced the Medicare Negotiation and Competitive Licensing Act, a bold, bicameral piece of legislation that serves as a major step in moving towards patient-first pharmaceutical pricing. 

The following is a quote from Shawn Gremminger, Senior Director Federal Relations at Families USA:

“When Congress first enacted the Medicare Drug Benefit (Part D) in 2003, drug makers successfully lobbied to keep Medicare from negotiating prices. More 15 years later, it is clear that was a costly mistake. Neglecting to give Medicare negotiating power in Part D discussions has allowed the cost of drugs to skyrocket at the expense of patients and taxpayers. Because the government has lacked the ability to negotiate prices, we have seen the price of four of the top 12 selling drugs more than doubled since 2012, including Lyrica, Enbrel, Humira, and Lantus. 

The Medicare Negotiation and Competitive Licensing Act stands is a long-overdue correction, by allowing Medicare to negotiate prices directly with pharmaceutical companies and to authorize generic competition when negotiations fail. The Act takes power away from pharmaceutical company monopolies and gives power back to patients through harnessing the governments’ purchasing power and spurring market-driven competition. 

The resulting Act is a win for families who are struggling to afford the cost of their prescription drugs as a result of price gouging. And it’s a win for taxpayers who will no longer shoulder the burden of arbitrary price increases. It’s past time to bring meaningful prescription drug pricing reform to the American people.”