On Tuesday, September 12, the Coalition for Affordable Prescription Drugs (CAPD) participated in a panel discussion at the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s 40th Anniversary Convention. The session was titled “Advancing Innovation in Prescription Drugs and Medical Breakthroughs While Improving Access and Affordability for All.”
Moderated by U.S. Representative Raul Ruiz (D-CA), the panel featured CAPD Executive Director Meghan Scott and representatives from Amgen and PhRMA. The panel discussion focused on the role that manufacturers play in setting prices, the impact that prescription drug costs have across the delivery system, and the need for modern insurance design. Other key themes discussed included affordability, transparency, rebates at the point-of-sale, and value-based arrangements.
Scott highlighted the important work PBMs are doing to help employers, unions, and other health care purchasers control costs, and help employees and members manage chronic conditions and increase medication adherence.
“Amid rising prices, employers and unions have had to find ways to ensure their employees, members, and their families can afford the medicines they need to get and stay healthy,” Scott explained. “PBMs increase access by driving down the final price for the sale of a drug on behalf of the employers, unions, and health plans they work with. These savings help to hold down premium and cost-sharing increases for their employees and members and allow them to continue to offer affordable, accessible health and drug benefit coverage.”
The discussion touched upon transparency, and Scott reiterated that more than 90 percent of savings achieved through PBM rebates and discounts are passed on to partners, which they can use to help lower out-of-pocket costs and premiums for their employees and members.