Welcome to the Week in Review.

Inflation Penalties Drive Patient Savings
Great news for Medicare as the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced that the Inflation Rebate Program in the Inflation Reduction Act is already yielding significant benefits for some patients. Several drug companies that excessively hiked prices on 64 Part B medications will be required to pay rebates to Medicare, potentially benefitting more than 750,000 people who take these medications. From July 1 – September 30, 2024, these drugs will have lowered coinsurance rates, and during this time period patients could see savings of up to $4,593 per day. For instance, a patient taking Padcev, a bladder cancer drug, could save as much as $1,181 since the drug’s price increased faster than the rate of inflation every quarter since the program went into effect in 2023. The Medicare inflation rebate program aims to prevent arbitrary price increases on essential medications and protect patients from exploitative pricing tactics.  — (HHSFierce Health CareCNBC

TIME Magazine Highlights P4AD Patients Advocates
Yesterday, TIME ran an article showcasing the daily struggles and resilience of patients facing exorbitant medication costs – featuring the stories of several P4AD patient advocates. Jackie Trapp and Janet Karrigan, both battling multiple myeloma, Melissa Tavares, advocating for her daughter’s epilepsy medication, Bob Parant, managing diabetes and heart failure, and Jacquie Persson,navigating Crohn’s disease and migraines, all shared the strategies they are forced to employ to manage their drug costs. Fortunately, for patients on Medicare like Bob and Janet, there is already some relief from the new drug law, including a cap on out-of-pocket spending, a $35 monthly cap for insulin, and free vaccines. “The savings for patients is going to be life-changing,” Merith Basey, executive director of P4AD shared with TIME. Further, Medicare is currently negotiating with drug companies to lower prices on the first 10 of an eventual 60 medications. These patient stories are at the heart of what we do every day and serve as an important reminder of why we must continue to push for additional reforms to lower drug prices, including tackling pharmaceutical industry patent abuses and addressing exorbitant launch prices. – (TIMEFightPharma.org)

Digital Day of Action: Defending Medicare Negotiation
P4AD and allies hosted a panel discussion this week featuring experts and patient advocates focused on ongoing advocacy efforts to ensure the Medicare negotiation program is successfully implemented despite pharmaceutical industry lawsuits. Zachary Baron, director of the Health Policy and the Law Initiative at the O’Neill Institute, highlighted pharma’s fierce opposition to the new program and the encouraging trend of federal judges ruling in favor of patients. P4AD’s Director of Advocacy and Organizing, Temi Amoye, discussed our US v. Pharma campaign and how we’re mobilizing patients against Big Pharma’s efforts. The panel was moderated by Laura Packard of Health Care Voices and featured P4AD patient advocates Emmabella Rudd and Kaye Peterson, who shared their experiences with high drug prices and the anticipated relief for patients from Medicare negotiation. Their heartfelt stories underscored the importance of preserving this critical program and how motivated patients are to fight back against efforts to undermine it. Watch the discussion here.  – (FacebookO’Neill InstituteFightPharma.orgP4ADP4AD

In Case You Missed It
According to GoodRx’s tracker, prescription medication costs in the U.S. have surged 37 percent since 2014, outpacing inflation and raising out-of-pocket expenses for consumers. According to the same data, so far in 2024, consumers have spent $21 million out-of-pocket on prescription drugs.