AKRON, Ohio — A ballot proposal to rein in drug costs was soundly defeated in Ohio Tuesday after an expensive ballot fight that drew tens of millions of dollars from the pharmaceutical industry.
The ballot proposal, known as the Drug Price Relief Act, was rejected by nearly 80 percent of voters in final results. It would have required that state agencies pay no more for medicine than the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, which gets a 24 percent discount off average manufacturers’ prices.
It seems to me that perhaps the greatest driving force behind high prescription drug prices was left out of this entire conversation – the pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs. Their unyielding, unconscionable demands for higher and higher rebates from drug manufacturers is what causes prices to continually rise for patients, plan sponsors, and our government. This is not to say manufacturers don’t share some of the blame, e.g. limited availability generics with egregious pricing, authorized generics which keep prices up, and new drugs which are re-introduced into the market as a combination of two very inexpensive generics cause prices to rise as well. BUT, the mantra of the PBM industry “if you want to play in my sandbox you have to pay” exists on a larger scale than ever before and that needs to be soundly nipped in the bud. I for one will continue to expose their egregious actions and name names. They know, but won’t admit it. Their time is coming…………………..
This indeed has been defeated twice , while it is true some large groups Ohio Hospital Association and OSMA supported it this report leaves out the many more groups who did not support this issue . Perhaps including the ballot wording would assist your readers in their evaluation of this “news” item . Thank you
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