WASHINGTON – This week, Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14) introduced the Prescription Drug Price Reporting Act to provide much-needed transparency surrounding the costs of life-saving medications. The legislation, which was introduced in the Senate by Senator Rick Scott(FL), creates a public, consumer-friendly federal database of drug pricing information and compels drug companies to explain any price increases.
“The high cost of prescription drugs is one of the biggest challenges facing our communities,” said Rep. Dave Joyce. “On top of that, it’s next to impossible for patients to know the real cost of medications before they receive them. You wouldn’t buy a car – or make any other major purchase – without knowing how much it cost, so why do we force patients to make critical choices about their health without having that same information? The Prescription Drug Price Reporting Act brings accountability to our broken drug pricing system and combats the lack of transparency that has burdened Ohio families for far too long.”
“There’s no reason patients shouldn’t know exactly what their prescription drugs cost before they get to the pharmacy,” said Senator Rick Scott. “The Prescription Drug Price Reporting Act gives patients the information they need to make informed decisions for themselves and their families. Even in the hyper-partisan, dysfunctional world of Washington, D.C., creating more transparency in the healthcare system is something we must get done now to help families across our nation.”
Specifically, Dave’s bill creates a central federal database website that will include pharmaceutical list prices, average net price and aggregate manufacturer rebates. Furthermore, the bill requires each manufacturer of a prescription drug to report financial and non-financial factors for any price changes.
The average person spends roughly $1,200 on prescription drugs each year and the costs continue to steadily increase. For the 419,025 Buckeyes who have heart disease, the cost of Aggrenox increased from $3,030 per year in 2012 to $5,930 in 2017. For the over one million Buckeyes living with diabetes or pre-diabetes, the cost of Lantus increased from $2,907 per year in 2012 to $4,702 per year in 2017. According to AARP, in 2016, 27% of Ohio residents stopped taking medication as prescribed due to cost. That’s why earlier this year, Dave joined a bipartisan, bicameral group of lawmakers to call for much-needed legislative action to lower the cost of life-saving medications and increase transparency of drug pricing.
“By working together across party lines, we can empower patients with the information and tools they need to choose the care that best fits their personal health needs and financial situations, said Rep. Dave Joyce. “I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle and the Administration to give patients the affordability they need, the options they want and the quality they deserve.”