May 7, 2020
Contact: Carl Schmid
Trump Administration Shocks Patients By Allowing Insurers to Increase Cost of Prescription Drugs
Plans Do Not Have to Count Copay Assistance
Today, in a shock to patients, the Trump administration
that health insurers do not have to count copay assistance from drug manufacturers towards patient out-of-pocket cost sharing and deductibles. In response to this announcement,
Carl Schmid, executive director
HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute
, who has been a leading patient advocate in support of copay assistance for prescription drugs, issued the following statement:
“Even before the coronavirus, patients were struggling to pay for their medications and relied on copay assistance from drug manufacturers. It is just unimaginable that the Trump administration moved forward with this regulation at a time when people throughout the country are facing financial hardships like they have never experienced before. I thought the president was focused on lowering the cost of prescription drugs for Americans. This a major setback for patients who rely on prescription drugs to remain healthy.
“Until this policy is reversed, since patients are not receiving the protections they need from the federal government, they will have to urge their individual insurance companies and employers not to adopt policies that do not count copay assistance. Additionally, they can urge their state governments to issue regulations and pass laws that require issuers to count copay assistance.”
In 2018, drug manufacturer copay assistance totaled $13 billion, according to data from IQVIA. The new rule is a complete reversal of the administration’s policy announced last year that required copay assistance to count for brand name drugs that do not have a generic.
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