Well being Subcommittee Chair Guthrie Opening Assertion on Decreasing Prices with Transparency and Competitors
Washington, D.C. — Subcommittee on Well being Chair Brett Guthrie (R-KY) delivered the next opening assertion at as we speak’s Well being Subcommittee listening to titled “Lowering Unaffordable Costs: Legislative Solutions to Increase Transparency and Competition in Health Care.”
Excerpts and highlights beneath:
BIPARTISAN WORK TO LOWER COSTS FOR PATIENTS
“We’re right here as we speak as a result of well being care prices proceed to rise, additional limiting American’s budgets which have already been stretched skinny by inflation pushed by the spending within the final couple of years.
“We’re contemplating 17 payments and dialogue drafts to advance value transparency and enhance competitors throughout the well being care system to finally decrease prices.
“This legislative listening to builds on our bipartisan work final month.
“In our academic listening to, we heard from specialists and witnesses from throughout the political and coverage spectrum who share our aim to decrease prices for sufferers.
“Republicans and Democrats on this committee are reaching throughout the aisle to advance options, and these bipartisan efforts will be seen in many of proposals earlier than us as we speak.
“Transparency can reveal the true worth of every step within the well being care provide chain and empower sufferers and employers to get the very best deal on top quality care.
“Lots of the proposals earlier than the subcommittee as we speak will shine a light-weight on prescription drug middlemen and additional polices to make the well being care system extra aggressive to decrease prices.”
THE NEED FOR COMPETITION TO LOWER PRICES
“The Clear PRICE Act, launched by the leaders of the total committee, will assist construct upon the Trump administration’s hospital and insurer value transparency guidelines to make sure sufferers and employers are getting the very best deal.
“Whereas transparency is critical for a functioning market, there should even be competitors to decrease costs and improve high quality.
“As such, we’re reviewing various insurance policies designed to scale back incentives to consolidate and require suppliers to compete with each other on each value and high quality—all with the aim of benefiting sufferers.
“For instance, as we speak we are going to study various proposals that may guarantee sufferers aren’t paying extra for a similar companies in a single care setting versus one other.
“I sit up for listening to what the impacts of those insurance policies may very well be for sufferers; each within the high quality of care they’d obtain and the way these would affect their out-of-pocket spending.
“One proposal, really useful by MedPAC, would save $1.7 billion yearly.
“Equally, one other coverage would merely require CMS to evaluate the affect that regulatory selections might have on consolidation in well being care to see if federal laws could also be unintentionally driving consolidation.
“Enhancing competitors will assist guarantee seniors keep entry to the best high quality well being care companies at the very best costs.”
ADDRESSING THE MIDDLEMEN RAISING HEALTH CARE COSTS
“One other theme repeatedly heard throughout final month’s bipartisan academic listening to is the necessity to deal with pricing practices by pharmacy middlemen.
“Sufferers are dealing with rising prices on the drug counter, ensuing from the rising affect of a small variety of pharmacy profit managers.
“Because of consolidation throughout the PBM trade, 80% of all drug claims are adjudicated by three PBMs. It’s this subcommittee’s responsibility to make sure this consolidation is driving worth and enhancing outcomes.
“That’s why I strongly help the bipartisan PBM Accountability Act to offer key data to employers concerning the drug prices within the protection for his or her workers.
“With that data, employers can really know what profit their PBM could also be offering.
“There’s additionally bipartisan laws from Consultant Carter that may lastly ban unfold pricing in Medicaid.
“In 2019, it was reported that PBMs earned $123 million in Kentucky alone via unfold pricing.
“Medicaid applications ought to discover a extra clear method to pay PBMs for his or her companies.”
BIPARTISAN WORK WITH RANKING MEMBER ESHOO
“Lastly, I need to thank Consultant Eshoo for working with me on the MVP Act.
“The innovation coming the subsequent few years is recreation altering—together with potential one-time cures for uncommon ailments, sickle cell, and hemophilia.
“Nevertheless, the Medicaid system is just not set as much as pay for high-cost therapies.
“Medicaid applications function on an annual price range and wish extra flexibility to assist guarantee sufferers acquire entry to those therapies.
“This bipartisan laws builds on a Trump administration regulation that may give Medicaid applications the flexibleness wanted to pay additional time and enter into contracts that present sufferers with entry to novel cell and gene therapies.
“This cost mannequin additionally ensures states aren’t on the hook to pay for therapies that fail sufferers.
“In closing, I sit up for as we speak’s listening to to debate these bipartisan concepts to decrease well being care prices and sit up for working with my subcommittee colleagues to advance these insurance policies.”
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