Major Drug Companies Agree to Price Negotiations With U.S. Government

In HealthDay News
by Healthday

Ten drugs have been chosen for price negotiations by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

By Physician’s Briefing Staff HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Oct. 3, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Pharmaceutical companies that make the 10 prescription drugs chosen to be the first for price negotiations for Medicare patients have agreed to talks with the government.

The Biden administration announced Tuesday that the drugmakers, including Merck, Bristol Myers Squibb, and Johnson & Johnson, will take part in price negotiations despite ongoing lawsuits over this same requirement, NBC News reported.

This negotiation is a component of the Inflation Reduction Act, which allows Medicare to work with the drug companies to reduce prices for older Americans. Negotiations are to occur next year with resulting prices going into effect in 2026.

The first 10 drugs named by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services include diabetes drug Januvia, Enbrel for rheumatoid arthritis, and the blood thinners Eliquis and Xarelto. Last year, about 9 million Medicare enrollees paid $3.4 billion out of pocket for these 10 specific drugs, NBC News reported. Additional drugs will later be added to negotiations.

The federal government had given manufacturers one month to decide if they would participate in talks or face tax penalties, NBC News reported. Drugmakers could avoid the penalty if they remove their drug from the Medicare program, but that, too, could be costly.

Companies that are suing, including Merck and Johnson & Johnson, have said that allowing negotiations could affect their profits and, as a result, spending on research and development.

NBC News Article

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