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HEALTHCARE

What prescription drugs are lowering their prices for seniors in the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Program?

The Biden Administration has announced the ten drugs that will see prices drop as a part of the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Program.

Update:
The Biden adminstration has announced the ten drugs that will see prices drop as a part of the Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Program.
JONATHAN ERNSTREUTERS

Under the Inflation Reduction Act, passed by Congress in 2022, the US government was authorized to negotiate the price of ten drugs for Medicare members. On Tuesday, the White House announced the highly anticipated list. The negotiations with pharmaceutical companies are the first in US history and are expected to save the 19 million Medicare members enrolled in a Part D plan around $400 a year.

Those that made the list are a mixture of some of the most commonly prescribed drugs that do not have a generic alternative, making them more expensive, and drugs that are prescribed to a small group of Medicare members but have an extremely high price. Critically, the negotiated prices will only apply to Medicare members who opt to purchase a Medicare Part D plan. While a significant step forward, the negotiated prices will only affect a fraction of people in the US who take these drugs.

What are the most common drugs included in the list?

Two drugs, Eliquis and Xarelto, are prescribed to more than five million people and help prevent blood clots from forming. The average cost of these two drugs for Medicare members, on an annual basis, is currently $612. Diabetics could also see their prescription spending drop, with Jardiance, Januvia, Farxiga, and several Fiasp medications making the list.

With over half a million prescriptions, the heart failure medication Entresto will also see its price fall.

What are the most expensive drugs included on the list?

Imbruvica, which treats blood cancer, has an annual cost to the 20,000 Medicare Part D enrollees that take it of $6,497, making it the most expensive drug on the list.

At $4,207, the second most costly drug that will have its price negotiated is Stalara, prescribed to treat psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis. The last drug on the list is Enbrel, which treats rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and psoriatic arthritis and costs Medicare members $2,005 annually.