AFT’s Weingarten on President Biden Delivering Huge Reductions in Cost of Prescription Drugs
WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement on the announcement of the first 10 prescription drugs that Medicare will be able to negotiate with drugmakers as part of the Inflation Reduction Act:
“Where politicians of all stripes have tried and failed for decades to take on Big Pharma and curb the extortionate cost of prescription drugs, today President Joe Biden has delivered. Medicare finally has the power to bargain lower prices for tens of millions of Americans who rely on lifesaving medication but scramble desperately to afford it. And it is using that power to help our seniors.
“Americans will soon see deep discounts on 10 widely used drugs that currently cost $3.4 billion out of pocket—including blood thinners and treatments for diabetes, heart disease and cancer—with many more set to be added. Crucially, these negotiations will affect the broader commercial market and union members’ benefit plans, reducing prices for both employers and workers.
“The United States shamefully pays more than any other industrialized nation for medication, and the Biden administration—and Congress—heard Americans’ pleas and said, ‘enough is enough.’ And with insulin already capped at $35 a month for those on Medicare, the president’s commitment to easing the squeeze on the middle class couldn’t be clearer.”
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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.