Landmark Drug Pricing Reform Bill Passes Congress House

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  • The U.S. House of Representatives voted 220-207 to pass new, wide-ranging legislation allowing Medicare drug price negotiations for the first time and capping seniors’ drug expenses to $2,000 per year and seniors’ insulin costs at $35 per month.
  • The bill passed the U.S. Senate 51-50, with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie. President Joe Biden has said he would sign the legislation.
  • Beginning in 2025, price concessions will kick off for ten drugs in PART D with the highest program spending on the market for nine or 13 years and lack generic competition.
  • Wall Street Journal writes that the legislation would raise an estimated $739 billion in revenue and spend $433 billion on climate and energy programs and health insurance subsidies for people covered under the Affordable Care Act. President Biden is expected to sign the bill soon.
  • The legislation also allows for direct-price negotiations on a limited number of medications and puts a cap on the amount that seniors on Medicare pay for medicines annually.
  • In 2028, Medicare will start negotiating prices for high-spending drugs in the Part B program, which covers outpatient medical care such as drugs that healthcare professionals administer.
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