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Press Release

We Must Let Medicare Negotiate Lower Drug Prices to Stop Massive Premium Increases

WASHINGTON -

The following is a statement from Alex Lawson, Executive Director of Social Security Works, on today’s announcement that Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra will order Medicare to reconsider plans to increase premiums:

“Today’s announcement from Secretary Becerra is good news for seniors. Older Americans should not have to pay $22 more for Medicare every month to cover the outrageous prices of prescription drugs.

Medicare will likely avoid such a large increase for one reason: Public pressure recently forced the pharmaceutical company Biogen to cut the price of Aduhelm, a controversial new Alzheimer’s drug, in half.

But we can never rely on pharmaceutical corporations to do the right thing. Pharma corporations cynically anticipate public anger at high launch prices and so plan for ‘voluntary’ price reductions. Biogen priced it at $56,000 so they could cut the price in half and make $28,000 look ‘reasonable’ by comparison. They are trying to make fools of politicians and the public, and we can’t let that happen.

To permanently lower drug prices and keep corporate greed in check, we need to give Medicare the power to negotiate lower drug prices. That starts with passing the Build Back Better Act into law immediately.”

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Social Security Works' mission is to: Protect and improve the economic security of disadvantaged and at-risk populations; Safeguard the economic security of those dependent, now or in the future, on Social Security; and Maintain Social Security as a vehicle of social justice.

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