WASHINGTON — Nancy Pelosi unveiled House Democrats’ long-rumored plan to lower drug prices on Thursday, following months of speculation and back-and-forth between House progressives and the speaker’s policy advisers.
It’s a comprehensive plan: The bill would allow the federal government to negotiate the price of up to 250 drugs under Medicare and extend that price to the commercial market. It would force drug companies to pay back price hikes above inflation, dating back to 2016, to the federal government. It would also enact a price cap for U.S. drugs based on an index of prices in six foreign countries.
It’s unclear how the bill will play with House progressives, who for months had agitated for an aggressive drug pricing bill that would follow through on Democrats’ 2018 campaign pledges to allow direct Medicare price negotiation.