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WASHINGTON — Senate health committee leaders Bernie Sanders and Bill Cassidy on Tuesday announced an agreement on a bipartisan package to increase access to generic drugs and increase the transparency required of pharmacy middlemen.

The package includes four bills that would increase oversight of the Food and Drug Administration’s citizen petition process; reduce incentives for generic drug manufacturers to delay putting their drugs on the market; revise laws governing orphan drug exclusivities in response to a 2021 court ruling; and make a variety of reforms to how pharmacy benefit managers operate.


The PBM legislation would increase transparency for plans that employ PBMs and mandate that the middlemen pass 100% of the rebates they collect from drug makers to the plans that employ them. The bill would also ban spread pricing, or when plans charge more than the price the PBM paid for a drug.

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