Today, the Biden Administration announced proposals to more than double the number of drugs to be negotiated by Medicare and expand the $2,000 cap on out-of-pocket prescription drugs to people on private insurance – extending savings to an additional 189 million people not on Medicare.  

The proposal also includes a $2 cost-sharing limit for specific generic drugs such as statins and beta-blockers for people on Medicare Part D, improving access to cell and gene therapies, starting with addressing sickle cell disease, a condition that affects more than 100,000 people in the United States, and extending requirements for drug companies to pay rebates when their price increases exceed the rate of inflation. 

Merith Basey, Executive Director of Patients For Affordable Drugs Now, responded to the proposal with the following statement: 

“These proposals would expand on the historic progress already being made as a result of the drug price reforms in the Inflation Reduction Act. For two decades, Americans have been held hostage by a system preventing the United States government from negotiating for lower drug prices on behalf of patients. These proposals would build upon hard-won victories and represent another step forward for patients and advocates in our ongoing fight to ensure that every person can get the drugs they need at prices they can afford. As we continue to hear from patients every day who are being forced to make impossible choices between skipping their medication or paying their bills —the urgency of this fight has never been more apparent.” 

Americans pay 3-8 times more than other high-income nations for brand-name prescription drugs, and over 90 percent of voters from across the political spectrum said lowering prices should be an important or top priority for Congress. This announcement on the eve of President Biden’s State of the Union address, signals the Biden Administration’s commitment to prioritizing lowering drug prices in the coming year.