The NRLN has published podcast Episode #8, the first production when I have hosted a guest. Joining me for the dialogue was Ed Beltram, NRLN Vice President – Communications, who has researched and written the NRLN whitepaper: Congress and President Must Act to Reduce Price of Prescription Drugs Talk Is Cheap – Drugs Are Not!
Click here to directly access Episode #8 in the NRLN videos/podcasts library. If you have a problem with this link go to www.nrln.org and click on the videos/podcasts artwork in the middle column of the NRLN website home page.
Ed and I discussed that for all the bipartisan talk on drug prices by members of Congress, there has been little done in the way of legislation to stem the increases in prescription drug prices and to lower out-of-pocket costs. The 64 million Americans on Medicare are caught in the terrible perfect storm of prescription drug price gouging. They are taking more expensive medications while living on fixed incomes. Even with their Medicare Part D prescription drug plans they are paying substantial out-of-pocket costs. This means that they especially feel the pain of pharmaceutical companies’ relentless price increases.
We cited the bills in Congress that the NRLN has lobbied for that would remove the prohibition on Medicare negotiating drug prices, end pay-for-delay tactics that obstruct generic drugs from coming to market, and allow importation of less expensive drugs from Canada.
We also discuss the executive orders that President Trump has issued that his Administration believes would reduce the cost of prescription drugs.
With only a few days remaining in the 116th Congress (2019 and 2020), the prescription drug bills that the NRLN has supported will not be passed. However, we will lobby for reintroduction of the key bills early in the 117th Congress (2021 and 2022) that begins on January 3, 2021.
Remember, Seniors are Special!
Bill Kadereit, President
National Retiree Legislative Network