Georgians to Congress: Fair Rx Prices NOW

Posted on 04/14/22

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Over 92,000 Georgians signed a petition urging Senator Jon Ossoff and Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock to take action to lower prescription drug prices. And every day, AARP hears from seniors who are forced to choose between paying for the medicines they need and paying for other essentials like food and rent. Seniors like J.C. from Woodstock who has a Medicare supplement and a Part D plan, but still spends around $5,000 per year on prescription medication. Or Eleanor from Stone Mountain who pays $200 every time she has to get her glaucoma prescription refilled. Or Nicola from Woodstock who chooses only the medications she can afford at the pharmacy and leaves the rest at the counter. Or Michael who was paying $600 a month for one medication.

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Right now, the U.S. Senate has a historic opportunity to finally make good on their promises and lower prescription drug prices - bringing much needed relief to seniors in Georgia. For older adults, who take on average 4 or 5 drugs a month and have a median income of less than $30,000, Congress' failure to act is unconscionable.

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And America’s seniors aren’t the only ones with skin in the game. Lowering prescription drug prices will also save the government hundreds of billions of dollars. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that the latest drug pricing provisions passed by the House would save $297 billion over 10 years – including $84 billion from rebates paid for excessive price hikes and $79 billion from allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices. Medicare spends over $129 billion on prescription drugs every year and is still not allowed to negotiate for lower prices.

Did you know?

  • If consumer prices rose as fast as drug prices over the last 15 years:
    • A first-class postage stamp would cost $1.57
    • A gallon of milk would cost $13.00
    • A gallon of gas would cost $12.20

For years, prescription drug price increases have dwarfed even the highest rates of general inflation. In January and February of this year, Big Pharma raised prices on 800 prescription medicines - and they have levied similar increases for decades, with no effective way to stop them from price-gouging America's seniors.

There is no reason why Americans should continue paying the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs - three times what other nations pay for the same drugs. Seniors are sick and tired of being PhRMA's piggy bank and funding their high profits, stock buy backs and million-dollar advertising campaigns.

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Congress has a historic opportunity to fix the unfair Rx pricing system - and right now, the ball is in the Senate's court. AARP is urging the Senate to pass the comprehensive prescription drug reforms, already passed by the House, that will finally let Medicare negotiate for lower prices, will cap out of pocket costs for millions of American seniors, as well as cap monthly insulin costs.

Find out more and urge Senator Ossoff and Senator Reverend Warnock to take action NOW!

This story is provided by AARP Georgia. Visit the AARP Georgia page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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