Today, President Biden delivered remarks on the Build Back Better Act’s critical provisions to make prescription drugs more affordable for millions of patients. The event featured health care storyteller, Iesha Meza, a young Arizonan and type 1 diabetic who has struggled to afford her insulin. As it stands, Americans pay three times more for their medications than people in other countries, forcing families to choose between paying for food or rent and affording the medications they need to survive. Build Back Better works to end this broken system by giving Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices, cracking down on outrageous price increases, limiting insulin copays to $35 per month for millions of diabetics with insurance, and capping seniors’ out-of-pocket drug costs. Today’s event made clear that the Senate should work quickly to pass Build Back Better to deliver long-overdue relief to families.
POLITICO: Biden Touts Drug Pricing Plan In Push For Social Spending Bill. “‘These price increases are about companies looking to maximize profits, and nobody is standing up for the patients,’ he said in a speech at the White House. ‘Nobody has held the manufacturers accountable until now.’ [Biden] noted the extraordinary lengths some Americans go to afford drugs that cost considerably less in comparable nations, including rationing their supplies or choosing between paying for medicine or other life necessities.” [POLITICO, 12/6/21]
NPR: Biden Calls On Congress To Pass His Build Back Better Bill To Lower Drug Costs. “The president pointed to the cost of insulin needed to treat Type 1 diabetes, which Biden says affects some 1.5 million Americans, who pay anywhere from $375 to $1000 per month for the drug. The House-passed measure would cap insulin prices at $35 per month. ‘I think it’s safe to say that all of us, all of us, whatever our age, where ever we live, we can agree that prescription drugs are outrageously expensive in this country.’” [NPR, 12/6/21]
The Hill: Biden Points To Drug Prices In Call For Senate Social Spending Vote. “Lowering drug prices is one of the most popular parts of Biden’s sweeping climate and social spending measure, and Democrats are looking to tout the changes and hammer Republicans for opposing them. A Kaiser Family Foundation poll found 83 percent of the public supports allowing the government to lower the prices.” [The Hill, 12/6/21]
Bloomberg: Biden Calls Drugs ‘Outrageously Expensive,’ Prods Senate To Act. “The package would also cap what most insured Americans pay out-of-pocket for insulin at $35 per month and limit what Medicare beneficiaries pay each year on medications to $2,000 per year. Before he spoke, Biden met with two young women with diabetes who would benefit from less expensive insulin.” [Bloomberg, 12/6/21]
CNN: Biden Says He Wants His Social Safety Net Bill Passed ‘as Early As We Can Get It’ As Negotiations Drag On. “‘There aren’t a lot of things that almost every American can agree on, but I think it’s safe to say that all of us … can agree that prescription drugs are outrageously expensive in this country,’ Biden said…”It doesn’t need to be that way’…Biden met with two women who suffer from diabetes ahead of his remarks. The bill, if passed, would cap the cost of insulin at $35 per month for Medicare beneficiaries and those with private insurance.” [CNN, 12/6/21]
MarketWatch: Biden Promises Build Back Better Plan Will Slash ‘Outrageously Expensive’ Drug Prices As Democrats Push To Pass Bill Before Christmas. “The bill features an annual cap of $2,000 on out-of-pocket drug costs for Medicare recipients. Pressing lawmakers to ‘finish the job’ on the Build Back Better plan, Biden said diseases like diabetes or cancer ‘don’t care whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican. This is not a partisan issue,’ he said.” [MarketWatch, 12/6/21]