Feds Should Stay Out of Competitive Pharmaceutical Marketplace


Posted by Mattie Duppler on Thursday, December 1st, 2011, 10:53 AM PERMALINK


This morning, Americans for Tax Reform sent a letter to senators on the Judiciary Committee, warning lawmakers to keep their hands off of the productive players in the health care system. A merger between two pharmacy benefit managers - which work to ensure the best prescription drugs are available for the best price - is currently pending in front of the Federal Trade Commission, but Congress has decided to needlessly interject itself into the debate. From our letter:

PBMs work to understand and address problems that cost the health care industry billions, such as patient compliance and harmful medication interactions. These losses are mitigated and could ultimately be prevented by the efforts made by PBMs to promote greater patient understanding.

The competitive nature of PBMs has allowed companies to develop diverse methods for controlling costs and providing safe medications. Thus, the proposed merger between pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) Express Scripts and Medco Health Solutions would empower patients with greater prescription choice and broader pharmaceutical information. These companies have recovered preventable costs in the health care system without government mandate or management—to intervene as companies start to build on their successes would reverse significant pro-patient reform.

Discouraging the collaboration of two companies that have been tremendously successful in lowering costs and increasing safety would indicate lawmakers are not serious about addressing long-term sustainability in the American health care system. I encourage you to consider these points as the discussion on PBM mergers continues and urge you to refrain from any action that would allow this effective health care reform to move forward.

Click here to read the entire letter.

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