University of Wisconsin–Madison

Fighting for Affordable Medication: State Level Solutions to Lower Prescription Drug Prices

Type Policy Brief or Report
Year 2018
Level County
State(s) All States
Policy Areas Children & Families, Health, Housing, Public Safety
Health care is a top concern for many American families - and for good reason. Health care spending in the United States accounts for 17.9 percent of the nation's GDP, and medical bills are the number one reason for American bankruptcies. Prescription drug prices are a huge factor in those costs - in recent years, pharmaceutical companies and pharmacy benefi managers (PBMs) have rapidly increased prices. Additionally, new drugs have reached the market with price tags that easily exceed most Americans' annual income. Americans spent approximately $323 billion on prescription medicines in 2016, with some estimates of spending reaching over $400 billion by 2021. Fortunately, there are many policy options for states to address prescription drug prices.

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