March 6, 2019
(Washington, D.C.) — Pharmaceutical Care Management President and CEO JC Scott issued the following statement on newly introduced legislation by Senator Mike Braun (R-Ind.), “The Drug Price Transparency Act:”
“We stand ready to work with Senator Braun and other policymakers who share the goal of reducing high drug costs. Pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) are the primary advocates for consumers in the fight to keep prescription drugs accessible and affordable.
We are concerned that legislation designed to require a specific use for prescription drug rebates in private-sector health plans would dictate coverage options. Employers, insurers, and other plan sponsors are best positioned to choose how to structure the coverage they provide for their enrollees.
In addition, the legislation appears to do absolutely nothing to address the root cause of the problem: high list prices that only the drug manufacturers have the power to set. Despite drug manufacturers’ rhetoric, their pricing strategies are unrelated to the rebates they negotiate with PBMs.
PBMs negotiate on behalf of consumers, and work to keep a lid on overall costs for prescription drugs with market-based tools that encourage competition among drug manufacturers and pharmacies, and incentivize consumers to take the most cost-effective and clinically appropriate medication.
The key to addressing high drug costs is to increase competition so that negotiators are better able to drive savings for consumers.”