‘There’s no reason that Americans should pay more than anyone else for exactly the same medications…’
(Joshua Paladino, Liberty Headlines) Americans pay nearly twice as much for prescription drugs as other developed nations, according to a report from the Department of Health and Human Services.
HHS studied 27 drugs and found that Medicare pays more for 19 of them compared with countries with similar economic conditions.
And the 27 drugs, on average, cost 180 percent more for Americans than the international average price.
HHS Secretary Alex Azar said “the current international drug pricing system has put America in last place.”
Azar tweeted a list of the drugs studied and their international cost in comparison with their cost to American taxpayers.
For the main analysis, we included 27 different drugs. In total, this accounts for $17 billion—a majority of Part B spending on drugs. Among these drugs, on average, the US pays 180% more than the international price. And in some cases, more than 400% the international average. pic.twitter.com/1uIzx6Bn4c
— Secretary Alex Azar (@SecAzar) October 25, 2018
The Medicare program spent $8.1 billion, or 47 percent, more on drugs than a country paying the international average would have paid.
President Donald Trump released a plan on Oct. 25 to reform Medicare drug pricing.
He has criticized “astronomical” U.S. drug prices and scolded CEOs to get prices down.
Trump’s plan would scale drug payments to the levels of other developed nations.
It is “projected to reduce Medicare’s payments for these drugs by an incredible 30 percent over the next five year.”
Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, has worked to lower prescription drug costs by fighting pharmaceutical companies’ anti-competitive practices.
He has introduced legislation to allow America to trade medications with countries that have lower costs.
“Higher U.S. prices hurt patients and taxpayers alike,” Grassley said in a statement. “There’s no reason that Americans should pay more than anyone else for exactly the same medications, especially since so many of these medications were developed and manufactured right here in America.”