H.R. 3 Would Save Individual Patients Thousands Of Dollars On Costly Medications 

Giving Medicare the power to negotiate is the single most effective way to bring down drug prices and reduce costs for patients at the pharmacy counter. In addition to saving taxpayers $500 billion, the Democrats’ proposal would reduce the prices for the costliest medications by as much as 55 percent – saving patients an estimated $158 billion. An analysis from the Center for American Progress found that, in addition to saving patients thousands on expensive treatments for conditions like cancer and multiple sclerosis, H.R. 3 would help lower the cost of insulin for some diabetics by more than $700 annually.

The facts speak for themselves — consumers will benefit from drug price negotiations. It is time to put an end to Big Pharma’s fear mongering once and for all. A recent Committee on Oversight and Reform report found that between 2016 and 2020, 14 drug manufacturers spent a whopping $577 billion on stock buybacks and dividends. This figure is $56 billion more than what was spent on research and development over the same period, proving that high drug prices are funding profits, not innovation. 

KEY POINTS:

  • Drug price negotiations will save Americans billions. Drug price negotiations would drastically lower the cost of prescription drugs for consumers. Analyses confirm empowering the federal government to negotiate would reduce negotiated drug prices for the costliest medications by as much as 55 percent – saving patients an estimated $158 billion
  • Patients are at the whim of Big Pharma. Under our current system, patients are completely at the mercy of pharmaceutical corporations, with nearly one in four Americans taking prescription drugs experiencing difficulty affording their medications.
  • The vast majority of Americans support drug price negotiations. More than eight in ten Americans support the federal government negotiating lower prescription drug prices for Medicare recipients.

Negotiations Are Good For Consumers. The Lower Drug Costs Now Act (H.R. 3), would dramatically reduce the cost of prescription medications by empowering the federal government to negotiate prescription drug prices. Analyses from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office and the CMS Office of the Actuary confirmed the bill would reduce negotiated drug prices by as much as 55% – saving patients an estimated $158 billion over the next several years.

Americans Demand Negotiations Now. 79 percent of Americans say the cost of prescription drugs is “unreasonable”, with a recent Harvard-POLITICO poll finding 87 percent of respondents found drug pricing reform to be “extremely important”. When it comes to empowering the federal government to negotiate lower prescription drug prices for Medicare recipients, 86 percent of Americans are in support.

Nearly One In Four Americans Have Difficulty Affording A Prescribed Medication. Nearly one in four Americans taking prescription drugs have difficulty affording their medications, with 29 percent reporting not taking their medicines as prescribed at some point in the past year because of the cost. Those most severely impacted make less than $40,000 a year and have medication costs over $100.

Americans Live In Fear Of Drug Price Increases. Nearly nine in ten Americans feared that drug companies would use the pandemic as an excuse to raise prices. With seemingly endless price increases and drug manufacturers putting profits over people, it’s no wonder three in four Americans don’t trust Big Pharma to do the right thing and set fair prices for prescription drugs. 

High Prescription Drug Prices Perpetuate Racial Disparities. On average, Black, Hispanic, and Latino Medicare beneficiaries without drug coverage use 10 to 40 percent fewer prescription drugs than their white counterparts being treated for the same health issues. Inability to afford needed drugs is likely a critical element in why Black individuals suffer from many chronic illnesses at a greater level of severity. A prescription price increase of just $10 can result in reduced ability to access prescription drugs, often with fatal consequences.

Patient Assistance Programs Are Inaccessible For Those Most In Need. Many pharmaceutical corporations fund independent drug assistance programs. These deceptive programs function under the guise of providing needed medications, but in reality, tend to cover expensive, brand name drugs, even when cost-effective generic alternatives are available. Even more shocking is that 97 percent refused assistance to those who needed it most, individuals without insurance.