Home>702Times>U.S. Government Negotiates with Drug Companies to Reduce Prescription Costs for Seniors

U.S. Government Negotiates with Drug Companies to Reduce Prescription Costs for Seniors

By TheNevadaGlobeStaff, October 11, 2023 10:37 am

LAS VEGAS – Americans have long been paying higher prices for prescription drugs compared to other major economies. The U.S. government is now taking steps to negotiate with pharmaceutical companies to lower drug prices for senior citizens, potentially saving them thousands of dollars annually.

At Roseman University in Henderson, Senator Jacky Rosen recently convened with seniors to discuss the substantial impact of reduced drug prices. Notably, there has already been a significant change for seniors on Medicare, particularly those requiring insulin. Earlier this year, the monthly price for insulin was capped at $35 under the Inflation Reduction Act. Senator Rosen is advocating for an expansion of the program to include more individuals and drugs.

“In Nevada alone, over a quarter of a million people are insulin-dependent diabetics, with some paying $400-500 a month for their insulin,” Senator Rosen explained. She is sponsoring legislation aimed at reducing the cost of this life-saving drug for everyone.

“I am a co-sponsor of the Insulin Act, which is going to bring that $35 insulin cap to everyone in the country,” Rosen emphasized.

Since her first run for Congress in 2016, Senator Rosen has been frequently asked, “Why are my prescription prices so high? I have to choose between paying rent or buying food.”

Margy Feldman shared her personal experience as her husband was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and prescribed oral chemotherapy. They initially received a quote of $11,000 per month for the medication. However, after hours on the phone advocating for financial aid, they managed to get the drug company to waive the cost.

“Imagine paying $3,000 a month. I can’t imagine that not being a hardship on most people…My husband was ready to just say forget about it. I won’t take the drug. I’ll die,” Feldman explained.

In response to their situation, the drug company clarified that waiving the co-pay was not an issue for them, as they were still receiving payments from the insurance company, which itself incurred an $8,000 monthly cost.

“I take approximately 10 medications,” said David Berman, who requires ten daily medications for conditions including hypertension and diabetes.

High drug costs weigh heavily on patients, making them wake up every morning with financial concerns.

Berman noted a significant impact after the cap on insulin prices was implemented in January. His insulin expenses were cut in half, allowing him to allocate more money to essentials like gas and groceries.

In addition to addressing insulin prices, the Biden Administration is currently negotiating to reduce the costs of ten medications commonly used by senior citizens.

The U.S. government’s efforts aim to relieve the financial burdens on senior citizens and make essential medications more accessible.

Credits: Fox 5 Vegas

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