The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Linda Benesch,,

Medicare Negotiation Is a Huge Defeat for Big Pharma—and a Big Win for Seniors

The following is a statement from Alex Lawson, Executive Director of Social Security Works:

“Just over a year ago, President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act, giving Medicare the power to negotiate lower prices on prescription drugs. Today, Biden announced the first ten drugs subject to negotiation, and Big Pharma corporations are furious.

These are among the most outrageously priced drugs on the market, Pharma’s prized cash cows. For the first time ever, our government will stop Pharma corporations from charging as much as they want for life-saving and life-sustaining medications.

Over 8 million Medicare beneficiaries rely on these medications. In 2022, Medicare spent $50.5 billion on them — about 20 percent of total Part D prescription drug costs. Beneficiaries paid $3.4 billion in out-of-pocket costs, which were as high as $6,497 per enrollee.

This is just the beginning. Within a decade, Medicare will have the power to negotiate lower prices on well over 100 drugs. That’s a huge win for seniors and people with disabilities.

This is the biggest defeat Big Pharma has ever suffered — and it won’t be the last. We are going to keep fighting until every single person in America can get the medications they need.”

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.