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May 05, 2023

Senate Committee Releases Framework Targeted at Reducing Drug Costs

On April 20, 2023, the U.S. Senate Finance Committee released a bipartisan framework for developing legislation to help reduce drug costs for taxpayers and patients. The framework follows a March Committee hearing and identifies four challenges federal prescription drug programs face: “misaligned incentives,” a lack of transparency that ends up distorting the market, difficulties with access to pharmacies, and “behind-the-scenes practices that impede competition and increase costs.” 

Of the six policy solutions the Committee identified, three target Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs). These PBM-specific solutions are: disconnecting the compensation of PBMs from drug prices, enhancing the accountability of PBMs to their health plan clients, and having discounts that PBMs negotiate lead to savings for seniors.

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