As the healthcare world reels from COVID-19 and the leak of a draft of a Supreme Court decision that would overturn Roe v. Wade, drug pricing reform advocacy groups are reigniting the push for Congress to lower drug costs.
Advocacy organization Patients for Affordable Drugs has debuted “Push for Lower Rx Prices,” a series of short videos that will air in D.C. during the next several weeks. The goal, the group noted, is to encourage lawmakers to do something about drug pricing by Memorial Day.
The effort arrives after proposed drug pricing reform has stalled in Congress once anew. Late last year, congressional Democrats reached a deal to put drug pricing legislation into Biden’s $1.75 trillion social spending package.
The proposed legislation would have allowed the federal government to negotiate Medicare drug prices capped out-of-pocket costs for seniors at $2,000 per year. But after Senator Joe Manchin refused to support the bill, drug pricing reform has returned to its longstanding purgatory.
The Patients for Affordable Drugs ads include two patients, a college student with ankylosing spondylitis and a woman with multiple sclerosis.
In one ad, the woman with ankylosing spondyliti, notes that the last time her family had to buy her medication, they chose to go without it. They couldn’t afford the drug’s $6,000 monthly cost.
“I’m terrified, because I could be unable to walk unassisted if I can’t afford my medication,” she says. “If Congress doesn’t lower drug prices now, a whole other generation of us will suffer.”
The digital ads are part of a larger Patients for Affordable Drugs campaign, which includes 70 other organizations calling on Congress to act on drug pricing.