MONDAY, Jan. 30, 2023 (HealthDay Information) — The U.S. authorities may save billions yearly as soon as Medicare begins negotiating drug costs in 2026, new analysis suggests.

The Inflation Discount Act handed by Congress final 12 months permits Medicare to discount with drug firms on the costs of 10 of the highest-priced medicine in 2026 earlier than including 15 extra in 2027, 15 extra in 2028 and 20 extra every year after that.

If that had occurred in 2018, 2019 and 2020 for 40 medicine, it could have saved the U.S. $26.5 billion, about 5% of all drug spending, in accordance with researchers from Brigham and Girls’s Hospital and Harvard Medical College in Boston.

“That is a fairly sizable discount in spending from a really small variety of medicine,” examine writer Dr. Benjamin Rome, a major care doctor at Brigham and Girls’s Hospital and an teacher at Harvard Medical College, instructed NBC Information.

However specialists famous that drug firms may attempt to undermine the influence of the regulation.

“Drug firms are prone to battle mightily in opposition to the interpretation of every provision in order that the hammer doesn’t fall on their medicine,” mentioned Robin Feldman, a pharmaceutical and mental property regulation professional on the College of California School of the Legislation, San Francisco, instructed NBC Information.

The examine “reveals what is feasible,” Feldman mentioned.

The federal government will be capable of negotiate the costs of medication which have been in the marketplace for 9 years and for biologics which have been accessible for 13 years if there are not any generics or different comparable options, NBC Information reported.

Drug firms could attempt to maintain onto income by permitting a choose few producers to make generic variations of their medicine, Rome mentioned. They might additionally do one thing known as “evergreening,” by which they reintroduce their drug after making incremental modifications.

“I do not suppose anybody can be stunned to search out the business pushing again,” mentioned Tricia Neuman, a Medicare professional with KFF, instructed NBC Information.

The negotiations ought to present “very, very steep reductions,” Rome added.

The examine was revealed Jan. 27 in JAMA Well being Discussion board.

Extra info

The Congressional Finances Course of has extra on prescription drug costs.


SOURCE: NBC Information