House Democrats will start contemplating legislation to lower drug prices at a hearing next week. The move is one of the top priorities, according to the sources briefed about the matter.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee is likely to hold a legislative hearing on March 13 to consider bills to lower drug prices. The implementation of new measures is aimed towards relatively small-scale bills, which could lower the drug prices.
The legislation is expected to be receive bipartisan support namely for bills such as the Creates Act and “pay for delay”. Both bills look to take a dig on techniques medicine producing companies use in order to delay the introduction of cheaper drugs.
Healthcare is considered as one of the most vital issues in run-up to the 2020 Presidential elections and Democrats have often highlighted changing it for good. Even the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) frequently expresses that drug prices are a top priority of the agenda, alongside infrastructure and fighting the bad influence of money in the politics.
President Trump has also nodded positively in the matter, making it one of the rare agendas well backed by both sides of the House. The smaller scale initiatives, which likely commence as early as next week are, therefore, expected to get across the finish line pretty soon.
The bigger challenge though is the dynamic nature of the issue, majorly contributed by drug industry lobbying.
In the Senate, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the chairman of the Finance Committee, supports the Creates Act and “pay for delay” legislation, catalyzing hopes that those bills could also pass through the Senate.
The committees in both the House and Senate have already held hearings on the issue of the drug prices, but the Energy and Commerce hearing will be the first of its kind this year.