Washington, D.C. (April 7, 2016) Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) issued the following statement on recommendations voted on at MedPAC’s April meeting:
“PhRMA strongly opposes the sweeping new Medicare Part D recommendations approved by MedPAC earlier today. Taken together, these recommendations will significantly harm beneficiaries by eroding coverage and protections for some of the most vulnerable enrollees in the program. MedPAC’s vote also ignores broad stakeholder concerns raised in response to these proposals.
“In particular, the recommendation to exclude manufacturer discounts in the coverage gap from enrollees’ true out-of-pocket spending would in effect widen the coverage gap, increasing beneficiary out-of-pocket spending and hurting patients.
“MedPAC’s decision to revisit its 2012 low-income subsidy copay recommendation is similarly misguided and would penalize low-income beneficiaries with a clinical need for brand medicines and could increase other health care costs by reducing adherence to prescribed treatment regimens.
“Finally, MedPAC’s recommendation to remove antidepressants and immunosuppressants for transplant rejection from the classes of clinical concern in Part D was soundly rejected by a broad stakeholder coalition and bipartisan members of Congress two years ago. This recommendation would jeopardize access for beneficiaries with significant medical and prescription needs who live with mental illness or recently underwent an organ transplant.”
The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country’s leading innovative biopharmaceutical research companies, which are devoted to discovering and developing medicines that enable patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. Since 2000, PhRMA member companies have invested more than $600 billion in the search for new treatments and cures, including an estimated $51.2 billion in 2014 alone.
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