December 12, 2019 - WASHINGTON - AARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer Nancy LeaMond released the following statement urging the U.S. House of Representatives to vote in support of H.R. 3, the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act of 2019.
“AARP urges the House to vote for the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act. This important legislation is a bold step toward lowering prescription drug prices and improving Medicare for seniors across the country.
“H.R. 3 would allow Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices, set an annual out-of-pocket cap for seniors in Medicare Part D, and crack down on relentless drug price increases by pharmaceutical companies.
“Lowering prescription drug prices results in enormous savings, and this bill would reinvest those funds back into the Medicare program to create new dental, hearing, and vision benefits. These benefits would improve older adults’ health and well-being and reduce future health care costs. H.R. 3 would also invest in the National Institutes of Health which plays an instrumental role in the research and development of prescription drugs.
“High drug prices disproportionately hurt older Americans, who take an average of four to five prescription medications each month. The average annual price of a single specialty drug now costs $79,000. Medicare beneficiaries have modest median annual incomes of just over $26,000. Medications cannot help you if you cannot afford them.
“On behalf of our 38 million members and all Americans nationwide, AARP urges Congress to take meaningful action to address skyrocketing drug prices and improve Medicare by voting yes on this important legislation.”