On Drug Costs, Here’s What To Expect From A Biden Or Trump Presidency
Read about the biggest pharmaceutical developments and pricing stories from the past week in KHN's Prescription Drug Watch roundup.
A Biden Presidency Could Bring Better Gas Mileage, Cheaper Drugs, Less Doom Scrolling
If former Vice President Joe Biden wins the race for the U.S. president, his promises to change Corporate America range from more strict regulation on auto emissions to helping lower prices for prescription medicine. ... Biden has vowed to reduce drug costs and to allow Medicare, a U.S. government health insurance program, to negotiate drug prices. He has support from Congressional Democrats to pass such legislation, which the Congressional Budget Office has said could cost the industry more than $300 billion by 2029. (11/3)
Trump Touts His War On Drug Prices As Costs Continue To Climb
As the days to Nov. 3 dwindle down, the president of the United States has been hand selecting his points of emphasis for rallies and Twitter posts. Often, those choices go against the wishes of his own advisers. Veering away from core issues, Donald Trump has repeatedly invoked Hunter Biden's name, doubled down on unsupported allegations of mail-in ballot vote fraud, suggested he'll leave the country if he loses the election and repeated debunked claims that masks are not effective in preventing COVID-19.At most stops, however, Trump has at least attempted to broach one topic that pollsters have repeatedly found to be resonant with voters: the high cost of prescription drugs. And time and again, Trump has not only promised to cut them – "Drug prices will be coming down 80 or 90 percent," he said during the first presidential debate – but insisted that, functionally, he has already done so. (Kreidler, 10/31)
Expect A Lot More Of The Same If Trump Wins A Second Term
On prescription drugs, Trump came into office promising change so Americans would see the lower costs common in other economically advanced countries. But he backed away from a 2016 campaign promise to authorize Medicare to negotiate prices. And a big, bipartisan deal with Congress to reduce costs for Medicare recipients and restrain price increases eluded him. His administration did reach a narrower, yet significant agreement with drug companies and insurers to limit out-of-pocket costs for insulin for seniors to $35 a month. A series of regulations to try to curb drug costs remains a work in progress. (11/2)
As Trump, Biden Face Off, Could Drug Pricing Reforms Await? Experts Are Split, But Pharma Is Watching Closely
During most political campaigns, the subject of drug pricing is front and center. And in recent years, despite promises by politicians in both parties, efforts to lower U.S. prices have mostly come up short. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, though, the issue of pricing has never taken center stage on the 2020 campaign trail. But thanks to the health and financial challenges affecting millions of Americans, it’s as important as ever. So how can patients and their families expect drug prices to change depending on the results?No matter who wins the White House and Senate, fighting high drug prices is going to be “near the list of the top of the priorities for the government next year,” said David Mitchell, founder of Patients for Affordable Drugs. (Sagonowsky, 11/2)
The Motley Fool:
Is Drug Pricing Backlash A Serious Risk For Big Pharma Stocks?
Drugs in the U.S. are estimated to cost around 56% more on average than in similarly industrialized countries, and Americans are fed up. With prices for life-saving medications rising consistently, it's no surprise that people are irate and desperate for change. But should investors fear that public backlash will harm the share prices of their healthcare investments? The sole way that backlash over drug prices would dent pharma stock prices is from policy change, whether it's through new laws or changes to the U.S. regulatory landscape. So far, political action to address rising drug prices has been scant, though congressional investigations into the causes of price hikes have been ongoing since at least 2015. At the end of September, the U.S. House of Representatives held hearings with testimonies from the CEOs of major pharmaceutical companies, including Bristol Myers Squibb and Amgen. Congressional researchers assembled a substantial set of reports that document how drug price increases were handled at each of the companies whose CEOs were scheduled to testify, and the findings were very illuminating. (Carchidi, 10/31)
Tricare Prescription Drug Costs Won’t Rise In 2021 | Military.Com
Some good news for Tricare beneficiaries facing increasing costs in Tricare enrollment fees and premiums, next year: Your prescription drug costs will not change. Under the fiscal 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, copayments for medications available at retail pharmacies and through the Tricare mail-order system will not increase next year. Under the fee structure, 30-day prescriptions at Tricare network pharmacies for generic drugs will remain at $13, and for brand names, $33. (Kime, 10/28)