Administration Should Shelve Rebate Rule That Would Increase Medicare Premiums, Cost Taxpayers $200 Billion and Hand Big Pharma a Massive Bailout

In case you missed it, a new poll first reported by STAT News on Friday highlights how the “Rebate Rule is the Achilles Heel of the president’s drug pricing agenda.” The survey found the Rebate Rule garners far less initial public support than two other executive orders put forward by the White House — and the more voters learn about the misguided measure, the more they oppose it.

Big Pharma continues to hike prescription drug prices on millions of Americans while they grapple with the economic impact of a pandemic — even while receiving billions of dollars from taxpayers for research and development. Voters agree now is not the time to hand Big Pharma a more than $100 billion bailout, rewarding their price-gouging behavior and anti-competitive tactics, while also hiking premiums on America’s Medicare Part D beneficiaries, costing taxpayers billions and doing nothing to lower drug prices.

The Rebate Rule undermines the administration’s promise to hold Big Pharma accountable and distracts from important solutions to crack down on drug companies’ egregious practices and bring down the out-of-control price of prescription drugs. The administration should abandon this misguided, Pharma-backed measure and focus on holding Big Pharma accountable.

New Poll Shows Wide Support For Several Trump Drug Pricing Reforms, But Not Rebate Changes
Nicholas Florko
August 28, 2020

Voters in several battleground states overwhelmingly support several of President Trump’s recent proposals to drastically cut drug prices. But they’re markedly less enthusiastic about his plan to end drug rebates, according to a new poll shared first with STAT.

A full 87% of the voters surveyed support Trump’s idea to force drug companies to sell their drugs in the U.S. at the prices they offer in other similar countries, and 82% support his efforts to allow people to import drugs from Canada, according to the poll of 2,000 people in Arizona, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. It was conducted by McLaughlin & Associates and sponsored by the insurance lobby, America’s Health Insurance Plans, which supports both of those policy changes.

Trump’s plan to end drug rebates, as framed by the survey, is much less popular. Only 48% of voters surveyed said they approved of “Banning drug companies from giving rebates or discounts to health insurance companies for certain prescription drugs that are covered by Medicare.” (AHIP also opposes the rebate changes.)

The polling comes as Trump has made those and other drug pricing reforms a centerpiece of his 2020 reelection campaign, though none of the policies described in the poll have been implemented.

Read the full article HERE.

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