Gives Consumers Info, Justification, Advance Notice When Rx Prices Rise

MEDIA RELEASE

April 17, 2018

Contact: Adela Flores-Brennan, 303-839-1261/303-618-3604, [email protected]

Katie Reinisch, 303-653-1009, [email protected]

 

Advocates Praise Passage of “Prescription Drug Price Transparency Act”

Gives Consumers Info, Justification, Advance Notice When Rx Prices Rise

DENVER – Advocates for Colorado health care consumers celebrated the House passage of a bill to require pharmaceutical ­manufacturers to report big drug price ­increases to the state and to explain the reason for those ­increases.

House Bill 1260, “The Prescription Drug Price Transparency Act” would give both consumers and policymakers more information on the exorbitant price of prescription drugs by creating transparency and corporate accountability.

Coloradans simply want to know when, why and how much the price of their medications will increase, and policy-makers need to better understand how drug costs are driving health insurance premium increases,” said Adela Flores-Brennan of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative. “When drug corporations price medications out of reach, too many families struggle to make ends meet. This bill simply asks drug corporations to justify why they are increasing the costs of their drugs that were developed through taxpayer funded research.”

The Prescription Drug Price Transparency Act requires:

  • Drug companies to provide 90 days advance public notice when drug prices are increasing.

  • Drug companies to publicly justify price increases that exceed 10% in the previous two years; they must reveal their expenditures on advertising and promotion, research, manufacturing and other factors.

  • Insurers to report on the top 25 drugs that are the most costly, the most prescribed, and that have the highest price increases year to year, helping Coloradans understand how prescription drugs are contributing to premium hikes.

“Years ago, my medications were affordable but now I spend nearly $1,000 a month on my drugs and supplies, and that doesn’t include doctor visits,” said Sue Knipmeyer, a retiree from Grand Junction. “When prices go up, I wish I could know more about it.  Drug makers should have to tell us the reasons for increases and should help people like me budget so we can afford to stay alive.”

One in 10 Coloradans doesn’t fill prescriptions because of costs. HB 1260 will help lawmakers and Coloradans understand why prescription drug costs are consistently rising, even as competition is increasing for some drugs. In a recent statewide poll of likely 2018 voters, 94 percent of Coloradans said the public should be informed about the factors causing the increases in their costs for prescription drugs.

The House voted 33-30 to advance the bill to the State Senate.

 

Colorado Consumer Health Initiative represents 45+ Colorado health organizations with more than 500,000 health care consumer members, advocating for high-quality, affordable, and equitable health care for all Coloradans.  

 

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