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Capitol Health Call
September 12, 2007

Prescription Drug Discounts

JAMA. 2007;298(10):1153. doi:10.1001/jama.298.10.1153-d

A bill introduced in the House on August 1 would give states the authority to negotiate prices for prescription drugs for low-income residents with limited or no insurance.

The Voluntary State Discount Prescription Drug Plan Act of 2007 (HR 3309 [http://thomas.loc.gov]) was introduced by Rep Chris Van Hollen (D, Md), who said the measure would create state discount prescription drug plans that extend Medicaid-negotiated rebates to citizens whose income is up to 300% of the poverty line. Van Hollen estimated that uninsured US individuals would save about 40% on their drug purchases. “Just like [health maintenance organizations] and insurance plans in the private sector, participating states would simply leverage their purchasing power to secure better prices on behalf of their citizens,” Van Hollen said.