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Capitol Health Call
January 11, 2006

Mental Health Drugs Exempt

JAMA. 2006;295(2):152. doi:10.1001/jama.295.2.152-c

An amendment to the House's Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 could give some drug manufacturers a large exemption from cost-cutting pressures.

The bill (HR 4241) is intended to reduce the federal deficit by $50 billion over the next 5 years, in part by restricting Medicaid funding. To that end, one element calls for Medicaid recipients receiving medical therapy to be given the least expensive treatment. But an amendment inserted into the bill by Rep Steve Buyer (R, Ind) would exempt mental health drugs from provisions for states to create Medicaid preferred drug lists, according to published news reports.

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