Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) is expected to offer an amendment to the Prescription Drug Pricing Reduction Act (PDPRA) that will be marked up by the Senate Finance Committee on Thursday.
Her amendment repeals the non-interference clause that exists in Medicare Part D. This would replace free-market, private sector negotiation in Medicare Part D with government mandated prices and coerced negotiation. ATR urges a NO vote.
Part D is successful because it promotes free market competition in order to deliver cost-effective outcomes for patients and taxpayers. Rather than having the government negotiate, Part D facilitates negotiation between pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), pharmaceutical manufacturers, and pharmacies.
Under this system, plans are free to compete based on the goal of maximizing access and minimizing coverage costs.
As a result, Federal spending on Part D has come in 45 percent below projections – the CBO estimated in 2005 that Part D would cost $172 billion in 2015, but it has cost less than half that – just $75 billion. Monthly premiums are also just half the projected amount, while 9 in 10 seniors are satisfied with the Part D drug coverage.