WASHINGTON, D.C. — Big Pharma is cutting a backroom deal to make seniors pay more for their prescriptions so drug corporations can keep reaping record profits and buying back stock. Today, Patients For Affordable Drugs Now activated its community in an effort to stop this $4 billion windfall that would hurt seniors and help Big Pharma. Watch the kickoff ad here.
In February, Congress agreed to close the prescription drug “donut hole” a year early for Medicare beneficiaries. This is a good deal for seniors and a rare win for patients, consumers, and taxpayers over drug companies. But today, drug corporations are swarming Congress with lobbyists and astroturf groups trying to undo the deal and force Medicare beneficiaries to pay more.
“Big Pharma is up to its usual dirty tricks,” said David Mitchell, a cancer patient, Medicare beneficiary, and the founder of Patients For Affordable Drugs Now. “This go-round, the drug corporations are pushing for a rollback of good policy in order to pad their profit margins and make the rest of us foot the $4 billion bill. Both Congress and the public need to know and put a stop to it. The drug industry wants to pay less and make us pay more.”
Under a bipartisan agreement signed by President Trump earlier this year, drug corporations are responsible for giving a 70 percent discount on drugs in the donut hole starting next year. That’s up from a 50 percent discount this year.
Big Pharma is lobbying to only pay 64 percent of costs in the Part D donut hole instead of the 70 percent that was passed by Congress. This would result in a $4 billion windfall for the drug industry at the expense of patients.
Patients For Affordable Drugs Now is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with AARP and other consumer advocacy groups to stop this giveaway to Big Pharma.