Health: House Committees Approve Lower Drug Costs Now Act

The House Committees on Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means, and Education and Labor have approved the Lower Drug Costs Now Act of 2019 (H.R.3). This bill requires the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to negotiate prices on insulin and at least 25 drugs each year. These negotiated prices would apply to all Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D plans. Additionally, it creates an out-of-pocket limit of $2,000 for Medicare Part D plans. The Arc is pleased that provisions were added to ensure that the value of drugs is not measured based on quality-adjusted life years (QALYs), which are based on the premise that the value of one year of the life of a person with a disability is less than the value of one year of the life of a person without a disability. The amended bill makes several improvements for Medicare low-income subsidy recipients that The Arc supports, such as eliminating co-payments for generic medications.

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