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President Biden and Representative Spanberger Double Down on  Their Commitment to Lowering Drug Prices

By February 10, 2022No Comments

The Build Back Better Act Will Drive Down Prescription Drug Costs for Millions of Patients

Washington, DC — Today, President Biden joined U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) in Virginia to stress Democrats’ commitment to lowering health care costs and delivering meaningful relief for families across the nation. During the event, President Biden confirmed that lowering prescription drug costs and other measures to reduce health care costs remain central to the path forward on Build Back Better. 

Build Back Better works to end the status quo by giving Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices, lowering insurance premiums, expanding affordable coverage to millions by closing the Medicaid coverage gap, and more. In response, Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse issued the following statement: 

“For far too long, high drug prices have been a top concern for Americans from all walks of life. With Build Back Better, President Biden and Democrats are working to rein in Big Pharma’s greed and lower health care costs so millions of families can finally sleep a little easier at night. The bottom line is that giving Medicare the power to negotiate, cracking down on outrageous price increases and capping seniors’ out-of-pocket prescription drug costs will save lives. When the Senate passes Build Back Better, we will have President Biden and Democrats to thank for meeting the demands of voters and bringing real relief to millions of people.” 

Background: 

Rep. Abigail Spanberger: A Champion for Lower Drug Prices

Abigail Spanberger Is Fighting For Lower Drug Prices. Rep. Spanberger says prescription drug prices are the number one thing she hears about from constituents. “There are people who every single day when they wake up, they’re making decisions about how to go about their day, how to live their lives, based on whether they can afford the medication that they need, and how to afford the medication that they need, and that’s an extraordinary reality and its one that really does impact our entire community, whether its visible to everyone or not,” Spanberger said. 

Spenberger: “End The Monopoly. Let Medicare Negotiate Drug Prices.” Spanberger, along with some Democratic colleagues, wrote about their support of the Lower Drug Costs Now Act in a 2021 op-ed in the Washington Post. Spanberger wrote, “Medicare, the U.S. government’s health insurance program for seniors, has long been prohibited by law from negotiating the prices it pays to drugmakers for medications. We know the pharmaceutical industry is using this loophole to set and keep prices high. That’s why giving Medicare the power to negotiate drug prices must be a priority. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs already enjoys this leverage. Extending that power to Medicare is a step the House took in 2019 with Republican votes — only to see it die in the Senate. We have another chance to pass it now as part of President Biden’s economic agenda.” 

2021: Rep. Spanberger Voted For The Build Back Better Bill, Which Will Lower Prescription Drug Prices. Rep. Spanberger voted for the Build Back Better bill in November 2021. Under this plan, Medicare will be empowered to negotiate prices for select drugs purchased at the pharmacy counter and administered at a doctor’s office. Beginning in 2025, 10 drugs, in addition to insulin, will be negotiated with that number increasing to 20 drugs in 2028 and into the future. Drug companies who refuse to come to the negotiating table will be subject to an excise tax. Under BBB, all Americans with insurance will see their insulin co-pays capped at $35 each month, and for seniors Medicare Part D out-of-pocket costs for prescription drugs will be capped at $2,000 per year. 

2020: Rep. Spanberger Sponsored Legislation To Increase Drug Price Transparency. Spanberger sponsored legislation to increase transparency around drug prices to create incentives to help keep prices down. Spanberger sponsored the Public Disclosure of Drug Discounts Act, which would require the rebates, discounts, and price concessions PBM’s negotiate to be made public on a website through the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. 

2019: Rep. Spanberger Voted For Historic Legislation To Lower Prescription Drug Prices. Rep. Spanberger voted for the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act (H.R. 3), historic legislation to drastically reduce Americans’ prescription drug prices by up to 55% and save taxpayers nearly $500 billion over the next 10 years. H.R. 3 included the most comprehensive drug pricing reform in American history and the largest expansion to Medicare’s benefits in decades.