Recently I wrote about how a 2003 law passed by Congress prohibits Medicare from negotiating with drug makers on the price of the medications purchase. Medicaid does it. Because the response to this was significant, I have more to say on the topic.
- Medicare Part D premiums will increase 13 percent and in addition, Part D plans are increasingly placing high priced meds on special tiers requiring patients to pay as much as 33 percent of the cost of meds.
- Health and Human Services has much more negotiating power than the Part D plans;
- If HHS and the drug manufacturers cannot agree on a fair price, they can be made to enter binding arbitration
- Researchers have concluded that the federal government (taxpayers) would save at least $16 billion per year if it actually negotiated with the drug manfactuerers and got the same price as those paid by Medicaid or the Veterans Administration (both presently negotiate). The research also shows that Medicare would save $541 billion over 10 years if prices were negotiated to levels paid by citizens of Denmark.
Please lobby Paul Ryan and your Congresspeople!
Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers.