Washington, D.C. — Congressman Fred Keller (R-PA) has co-sponsored H.R. 19, the Lower Costs, More Cures Act, what he says is a bipartisan solution aimed at lowering prescription drug prices that should be brought up for a vote immediately.
Keller claims his co-sponsored legislation is unlike H.R. 3, the Lower Drug Costs Now Act of 2019, in that it does not increase government control over the prescription drug market and limit cures, but rather increases innovation and promotes low costs options while bringing about greater transparency.
H.R. 3, sponsored by Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to negotiate prices for certain drugs (current law prohibits the CMS from doing so). Specifically under H.R. 3, CMS must negotiate prices for insulin products and at least 25 single-source, brand-name drugs that do not have generic competition and that are among the 125 drugs that account for the greatest national spending or the 125 drugs that account for the greatest spending under the Medicare prescription drug benefit and Medicare Advantage (MA).
According to whitehouse.gov, H.R. 3, the Lower Drug Costs Now Act of 2019 may share the Trump Administration’s first goal of lowering prices, but the Administration claims it will threaten continued medical innovation. "H.R. 3 aims to lower prices for select drugs by forcing drug manufacturers to accept prices set by the Secretary of Health and Human Services—or otherwise face an excise tax of up to 95 percent of sales."
Congressman Keller said, “Americans pay too much for healthcare and one of the biggest contributors to rising healthcare costs is the high price of many prescription drugs. As such, I am co-sponsoring the Lower Costs, More Cures Act, bipartisan legislation that will stop skyrocketing prescription drug prices by encouraging innovation and competition, increasing transparency, and promoting more low-cost options.
“While travelling across Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District, I have made it a priority to meet with medical professionals and patients to discuss the topic of prescription drug prices. Their suggestions are simple: increase transparency, promote competition, and reform patent laws to allow generics to get to market faster. The Lower Costs, More Cures Act accomplishes those goals."
Keller claims H.R. 3, legislation would "lead to higher prices, fewer cures, and put the country on the road to socialized medicine by increasing government control of a private healthcare industry."
Keller called the Lower Costs, More Cures Act "a bipartisan, realistic solution," and encouraged Speaker Pelosi to bring H.R. 19 up for a vote.