Trump signs legislation ending pharmacy “gag clauses”

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President Donald Trump signed legislation ending “gag clauses” that prevent pharmacists from informing patients regarding ways to save money on their prescription drugs.

During the signing ceremony at the White House, Trump said, “All our citizens deserve to know the lowest price available at our pharmacies, and now that is what they’ll be getting.”

He added the legislation will allow patients to see drug pricing and they’ll know which pharmacies to go. The president believes that certain pharmacies will start lowering their prices once patients start leaving.

The Know the Lowest Price Act of 2018 prohibits Medicare Prescription Drug Plan sponsors and Medicare Advantage organizations from restricting or penalizing the disclosure of certain drug pricing information to enrollees.

The Patient Right to Know Drug Prices Act forbids health insurers from restricting or penalizing the disclosure of certain drug pricing information to enrollees, and to require the filing of settlements between biosimilar product developers.

Trump thanked the sponsors of the bills including Senators Susan Collins, Bill Cassidy, Lamar Alexanders, Debbie Stabenow and Representative Buddy Carter. The lawmakers attended the signing of the legislation at the White House.

Lowering drug prices: a priority for Trump administration

Furthermore, the president noted that after only 100 days since his administration released its drug pricing blueprint, 15 drug companies reduced, rolled back or froze their prices for the rest of the year.

Moreover, Trump said his administration “increased competition and reduced regulation to deliver medicines to patients faster and cheaper.” The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) accelerated its approval process for most generic drug applications. The FDA approved over a thousand generic drugs, which saved patients almost $9 billion in 2017 alone.

The president went on to say that lowering drug prices has been a priority of his administration since day one. He said, “It’s a very important thing for us.”

Trump is hopeful that Democrats and Republicans can work together on more drug pricing reforms in the future. He said, “I really do believe Democrats want to do that, too. If there’s anything bipartisan, it’s lowering drug prices.”