Families USA’s Letter to Senators Grassley and Wyden on The Prescription Drug Pricing Reduction Act 2019
On Tuesday, July 23, 2019, the Senate Finance Committee announced the Prescription Drug Pricing Reduction Act of 2019, groundbreaking bipartisan legislation to improve the lives of millions of families in our country. Families USA’s executive director, Frederick Isasi, wrote a letter to committee leadership offering strong support for the legislation and encouraging the committee to advance it with support from the House of Representatives and the White House in order to pass a final bill as soon as possible.
In particular, the letter indicates three important provisions that are particularly helpful to consumers struggling with high drug costs:
- Restructuring Medicare Part D to eliminate the donut hole and impose a cap on beneficiary out-of-pocket spending.
- Limiting annual price increases with inflation-based rebates in Medicare Part D and Part B.
- Imposing vital transparency requirements on drug manufacturers to provide researchers, policymakers, and the public with actionable information on how drug prices are set.
While we strongly support these provisions in the bill, Families USA believes much more needs to be done to ensure consumers are protected, in particular:
- Direct negotiation to address high launch prices for new drugs.
- Protecting the inflation rebate program from drug company gaming and non-compliance.