WASHINGTON, D.C. — Patients For Affordable Drugs Now announced it is launching two new national ads this weekend calling on Congress to lower drug prices by allowing Medicare negotiation. The six-figure push will start on Aug. 15 and run on CNN and MSNBC throughout August recess. The campaign includes two ads that feature patients who have struggled to afford their prescription drugs, as well as a new website hub for patient advocates to contact their members of Congress to demand passage of legislation to lower drug prices.
“Yesterday, we heard President Biden’s emphatic support for Congress to pass legislation to allow Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices, a crucial part of his Build Back Better plan,” said David Mitchell, a cancer patient and founder of Patients For Affordable Drugs Now. “Mr. President, patients couldn’t agree more; members of Congress must deliver reforms that 90 percent of Americans support and pass legislation to allow Medicare to negotiate lower prices on behalf of Americans. As the president said, ‘We have to change this. And we can.’”
The first ad highlights three patient advocates: Steven, a blood cancer patient in Charlotte, North Carolina, who is prescribed a medication priced at $132,000 a year; Ashley, a psoriatic arthritis patient in Houston who relied on Humira, which is currently priced at $5,968 a month; and Gail, a type 1 diabetes patient in Denver who takes insulin priced at $280 per vial.
“No one should have to drain their bank account for relief,” Ashley says in the ad. “The system is broken.”
“The prices keep going up,” adds Gail, who recently met with President Biden to share her story of living with high drug prices. “It’s killing Americans.”
Watch the first ad here.
The second ad highlights Ashley; Jackie, a cancer patient in Muskego, Wisconsin, whose treatment, Revlimid, is priced at over $20,000 per month; and Marcus, who lives with type 1 diabetes in Cincinnati and struggles to afford his insulin.
“Because insulin is so expensive, I’ve had to skip and ration my doses,” Marcus, a husband, father, and minister says in the ad.
“It’s really simple,” Ashley explains. “Prescription drugs don’t work if people can’t afford them.”
Watch the second ad here.
Both ads will run on cable and end with the message, “Right now, there’s a plan in Congress to let Medicare negotiate lower drug prices. 90 percent of Americans support it. Tell Congress: Let Medicare negotiate now.”
This campaign launch comes on the heels of the Senate’s vote to move forward with drafting a legislative package to deliver on the president’s Build Back Better plan, which includes lowering drug prices through Medicare negotiation. In the House of Representatives, H.R. 3, which would allow Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices on behalf of all Americans, was reintroduced in April. The Senate Finance Committee is reportedly working on similar proposals that would allow Medicare to negotiate.
P4ADNow’s new tool — MedicareNegotiation.org —is a hub for patients to advocate for Congress to pass legislation to allow Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices. It includes guidance for contacting members of Congress and writing a letter to the editor to local publications in support of Medicare negotiation.