President Donald Trump has promised to send $200 drug discount cards to 33 million seniors enrolled in Medicare, as part of his administration's effort to address high prescription drug costs.
"It is unacceptable that Americans pay more for the exact same drugs, often made in the exact same places. Other countries’ governments regulate drug prices by negotiating with drug manufacturers to secure bargain prices, leaving Americans to make up the difference—effectively subsidizing innovation and lower-cost drugs for the rest of the world," Trump wrote in the order, adding, "Americans should not bear extra burdens to compensate for the shortfalls that result from the nationalized public healthcare systems of wealthy countries abroad."
"We’re working with the drug companies on substantially lowering drug prices. I’ve put out a favored nations clause; I’ve signed it. That means we get the lowest prices anywhere in the world. We match whoever gets the lowest. And the drug companies are having a real problem with that. So they’re coming in to see me, and we expect to get a very substantial price reduction in prescription drugs, which has never been done before,” Trump said.
A spokeswoman for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), a pharmaceutical industry trade group that has worked closely with the Trump administration on drug pricing issues, later told Reuters that no meeting had been scheduled.
Trump, in the Sept. 24 speech, laid out his vision for health care—dubbed the "America First Healthcare Plan"—which focuses on providing “better care, more choice, and lower costs.”
“My plan expands affordable insurance options, reduces the cost of prescription drugs, will end surprise medical billing, increases fairness through price transparency, streamlines bureaucracy, accelerates innovation, strongly protects Medicare, and always protect patients with preexisting conditions,” Trump said.
Rival Joe Biden’s health care proposal includes expanding on the Affordable Care Act, the signature legislation of President Barack Obama, and instituting a public option that would offer government-run health programs similar to Medicare.