Buttigieg unveils aggressive plan to lower drug prices

Buttigieg unveils aggressive plan to lower drug prices

© Greg Nash

Pharma does not fare too well in 2020 Democratic campaign proposals, and South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s plan, released Monday is no exception. The presidential candidate’s plan is similar to the one championed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

Buttigieg would:

  • Allow both Medicare and the new public option plan he would create to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs, and those lower prices would be available to people with private insurance too.
  • Cap out-of-pocket drug costs in Medicare at $200 per month and force drug companies to pay rebates back if their prices rose faster than inflation.
  • For the “worst offender” companies, he would exercise rarely used authority under current law to strip firms of their patents if they were not offering a drug at a reasonable price.

Bigger picture: Lowering drug prices is a top priority for voters and Democratic presidential candidates have put forward a range of very tough plans across the spectrum. Even the more moderate candidates, like former Vice President Joe Biden and Buttigieg, are proposing to crack down hard on the industry. While candidates may differ on how to address health insurance coverage, their policies on the pharmaceutical industry are much closer to each other.

President Trump has also called for lowering drug prices, but he has yet to propose any major action that has gone into effect on the issue.

Read more here.

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