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Medicare Part D is an idea whose time had come. So, our government decided to do it badly. Would someone tell me why the U.S. Government should not negotiate prices on drugs?

Managed Care Matters predicts where non-negotiation is going to take us.

Drugs, profits and politics

By any accounting, Part D has been a boon to the pharmaceutical industry. Revenues and profits at Pfizer, Lilly, and other manufacturers have jumped. This will undoubtedly lead to more research dollars available to search for cures for awful diseases, an effort exclusively funded by the US taxpayer that will benefit the entire world.

Aren’t we generous?

Not only has big pharma made a ton of dough from Part D, it also eliminated the government’s ability to negotiate prices for Medicaid drugs for “dual-eligibles” (those individuals who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid). The logic behind this escapes me, but the impact on taxpayers does not. The amount we spend on drugs for dual-eligibles has increased, thereby increasing the burden on taxpayers, present and future.

What does this mean for you?

Higher prices for drugs and eventually higher taxes.

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