According to the White House, the United States often pays 80% more for certain drugs than other developed countries.
Prescription drug prices are set to fall following four executive orders signed by President Donald Trump on Friday, according to the White House.
It is promising news as families continue to struggle financially amid the coronavirus pandemic. President Trump had previously shared proposals for the orders, but the newer plans are more concrete.
The first order that the president signed “directs federally qualified health centers to pass along massive discounts on insulin and epinephrine received from drug companies to certain low-income Americans,” according to the White House briefing statement.
“The second order will allow State plans for safe importation of certain drugs, authorize the re-importation of insulin products made in the United States, and create a pathway for widespread use of personal importation waivers at authorized pharmacies in the United States.”
“The third order will prohibit secret deals between drug manufacturers and pharmacy benefit manager middlemen, ensuring patients directly benefit from available discounts at the pharmacy counter.”
“The fourth and final order ensures that the United States pays the lowest price available in economically comparable countries for Medicare Part B drugs.”
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According to the White House, the United States is often overcharged for prescription medication when compared to other developed countries. The White House estimates that the U.S. pays 80% more than others.
The orders have received pushback from some in the pharmaceutical industry.
The move was “a reckless distraction that impedes our ability to respond to the current pandemic – and those we could face in the future,” according to the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, who responded with a statement.
Executives at top drug companies have requested a meeting to discuss how they can lower drug prices, according to the president.
“We will see what those discussions indicate but the agency is prepared to move forward,” said Medicare chief Seema Verma.
The executive orders are slated to take effect on August 24th.
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