Monthly Archives

August 2021

U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, Little Lobbyists, MomsRising and Protect Our Care Call For Expanding Medicaid & Bringing Down Drug Prices to Help Children and Families

Call Conveyed the Devastating Impact of High Drug Costs on Children and Need for Expanding Medicaid & Giving Medicare the Power to Negotiate for Lower Drug Prices

Watch the Event Here

Washington, DC — Today, U.S. Representative Colin Allred (D-TX-32), Little Lobbyists Executive Director and Co-founder Elena Hung, and MomsRising National Director for Health Care Felicia Burnett joined Protect Our Care for a virtual press conference to demonstrate the devastating toll of high drug prices on children and their families. During the call, speakers discussed the urgency for prescription drug pricing reform in addition to how closing the Medicaid coverage gap in Texas and 11 other states could further increase children’s access to affordable health care. 

The event followed a new report from Protect Our Care, Little Lobbyists, and MomsRising that was released as part of Week 8 of Lower Rx Summer. Lower Rx Summer consists of themed weeks of action to illustrate the urgent need for legislation to lower drug prices principally by giving Medicare the power to negotiate with drug companies for lower prices for all Americans. 

“I was raised by a single mom who was a public school teacher, so I know how hard it can be for families to pay the bills every month,” said U.S. Representative Colin Allred (D-TX-32). “In the richest country on earth, everyone, especially our kids, deserves access to the prescriptions they need at an affordable price. Lowering prescription drug prices is one of my top priorities. With President Biden now in office, we have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to get this done, and I will keep working in Congress to do just that.”

“Many of our families rely on the innovation and development of life-saving medications to treat and sustain our children with complex medical needs and disabilities. Those medications, however, are only life-saving if the patient can afford them. Therefore, we call on Congress to give Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices so our families can access the life-saving medications our children need to survive and thrive,” said Elena Hung, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Little Lobbyists.

“Nothing is more heartbreaking than knowing there are medications that can improve or even save your child’s life, but you can’t afford them,” said Felicia Burnett, MPA, National Director for Health Care for MomsRising. “America’s moms are fed up with being forced to go into debt to access the medications their child needs. We’re fed up with drug companies profiting at our expense. And we’re fed up with lawmakers who prioritize drug companies’ bottom lines over the health and lives of our kids.”

“The high cost of my daughter’s prescription drugs has been a tremendous challenge for my family. Even though we are insured, many of my daughter’s prescription costs aren’t covered,” said Cindy Fraser, MomsRising storyteller and mother of two children with complex medical needs from Michigan. “As a mother, it’s terrifying to show up at a pharmacy counter and find out the insurance company has only approved the insulin that your daughter is allergic to, because it is cheaper. I wish these decisions were driven by doctors, not insurers, pharmaceutical companies and prescription drug costs.”

“Our nation’s children depend on bold action to bring down drug prices and expand coverage,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “No parent should be forced to make a choice between paying for lifesaving drugs for their children or putting food on the table or paying rent. Families stuck in the coverage gap face even greater barriers to accessing affordable health care. There has never been a more urgent time to act to close the Medicaid coverage gap and give Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices.”

NEW: Protect Our Care Launches Digital Ads Calling Out Republicans for Their Opposition to Lowering Drug Prices

Ads Hold Republicans Accountable for Their Refusal to Stand Up to Big Pharma and Give Medicare the Power to Negotiate for Lower Drug Prices

Watch the Ads Here 

Washington, DC — Protect Our Care is launching new digital ads in seven key districts today calling on Republican lawmakers to put an end to Big Pharma’s rigged system and finally give Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices for all Americans. Giving Medicare the power to negotiate would save patients and taxpayers billions and is widely supported by Americans across the political spectrum. 

The ads are part of The Campaign to Reduce Drug Prices, a seven-figure grassroots and communications campaign calling for comprehensive legislation to lower drug prices. The ads will run on digital platforms in the following districts throughout August: Mike Garcia (R-CA-25), Carlos Gimenez (R-FL 26), David Schweikert (R-AZ-06), Ashley Hinson (R-IA-01), Scott Perry (R-PA-10), Don Bacon (R-NE-02), and John Katko (R-NY-24). 

“As the price of prescription drugs skyrocket, Republicans continue to prioritize drug company profits over the health and well-being of the American people. Americans pay three times more for drugs as people in other countries, forcing millions of families to choose between the prescriptions they need to survive or paying for essentials like food and rent,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Voters across parties are demanding relief and want Medicare to have the power to negotiate for lower prices. Time is running out — Republican lawmakers must reverse course and get behind Medicare negotiation to provide much-needed relief to Americans who are being fleeced by Big Pharma.” 

Example (CA-25) Ad Script: 

Representative Mike Garcia is siding with the BIG drug companies instead of patients.

He refuses to support giving Medicare the power to negotiate lower drug prices.

Americans pay 3 times more than other countries for the same drugs…

And prices continue to go up and up.

Millions of Americans are forced to choose between paying for the medicines we need or paying for food or rent.

We can’t afford to wait any longer.

Call Representative Garcia: Tell them to support lower drug prices. Now.

PRESS CALL: U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, Little Lobbyists, MomsRising and Protect Our Care to Highlight Dire Toll of High Drug Costs on Children

***MEDIA ADVISORY FOR THURSDAY, AUGUST 5 AT 11:00 AM ET // 10:00 AM CT***

PRESS CALL: U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, Little Lobbyists, MomsRising and Protect Our Care to Highlight Dire Toll of High Drug Costs on Children

 Call Will Convey Urgent Need to Stand Up to Big Pharma and Give Medicare the Power to Negotiate for Lower Drug Prices 

Washington, D.C. — On Thursday, August 5 at 11:00 AM ET // 10:00 AM CT, U.S. Representative Colin Allred (D-TX-32), Elena Hung, the executive director and co-founder of Little Lobbyists, and Felicia Burnett, MPA, National Director for Health Care at MomsRising will join Protect Our Care for a virtual press conference to discuss the devastating toll of high drug prices on children and their families. In addition to addressing the urgent need for prescription drug pricing reform, speakers will discuss how closing the Medicaid coverage gap could help millions of Americans, including 771,000 Texans, access affordable health care. 

The event comes after Protect Our Care released a report co-sponsored by Little Lobbyists and MomsRising as part of Week 8 of Lower Rx Summer. Lower Rx Summer consists of themed weeks of action to illustrate the urgent need for legislation to lower drug prices principally by giving Medicare the power to negotiate with drug companies for lower prices for all Americans. 

In the coming months, President Biden and members of Congress have an unprecedented opportunity to finally take action to lower drug prices. In 2019, the House of Representatives passed the Lower Drug Costs Now Act (H.R. 3), historic legislation that would lower drug prices for all Americans. H.R. 3 would save patients over $150 billion and reduce the price of the costliest drugs by as much as 55 percent. Giving Medicare the power to negotiate would dramatically reduce drug prices for Americans of all ages and is supported by over 80% of voters, including over 50% majorities of Republicans and independents.

PRESS CALL:

WHO:
U.S. Representative Colin Allred (D-TX-32)
Elena Hung, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Little Lobbyists
Felicia Burnett, MPA, National Director for Health Care, MomsRising
Leslie Dach, Chair of Protect Our Care

WHAT: Virtual Press Conference to Highlight Dire Toll of High Drug Costs on Children and the Importance of a Federal Solution to Closing the Medicaid Expansion Gap

WHERE: Register for the Event Here

WHEN: Thursday, August 5 at 11:00 AM ET // 10:00 AM CT

Democrats Remain Laser-Focused on Health Care During August Recess

Washington, DC — Today, the Democratic National Committee, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee released a memo outlining their priorities for the August recess. The memo makes clear Democrats are laser-focused on advancing American health care, including by lowering prescription drug costs and insurance premiums and expanding access to affordable coverage on the ACA marketplaces, while Republicans remain opposed to these highly popular reforms. 

The memo comes just days before Protect Our Care kicks off its 19-state bus tour in Bangor, Maine, which will promote the work of President Biden and dozens of Democratic lawmakers who are leading the charge to lower health costs, expand coverage, and reduce racial disparities in care. In response to the memo, Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach issued the following statement:

“The Democratic plan to focus on health care during the August recess reflects the fact that poll after poll shows that health care is the number one issue for voters. Just like in previous election cycles, health care will be a deciding issue in 2022. Protect Our Care’s nationwide bus tour kicking off next week will drive home the message that Democrats are delivering on their promises to reduce the cost of prescription drugs and insurance premiums while Republicans continue to oppose legislation to improve care and lower costs for the American people.” 

From the memo:

Democrats will highlight how we are lowering costs like health care for the American people: 

  • Thanks to President Biden and Democrats’ American Rescue Plan, 4 out of 5 people enrolled in a marketplace plan can now buy health care for $10 or less per month. Now, Democrats are fighting to make those premium reductions permanent – lowering millions of American families’ monthly health care costs — along with proposals that would further reduce the cost of health care, prescription drugs and expenses like elder care and child care.  
  • Since the Biden administration opened a special enrollment period because of the pandemic, more than 2 million Americans have signed up for health insurance since February.
  • Even in the midst of the pandemic, Republicans have continued their efforts to roll back, weaken and eliminate the Affordable Care Act — attempting to spike costs and gut coverage protections for those with pre-existing conditions. Democrats believe that every single American should have access to quality, affordable care.