Hoyer Participates in Roundtable Discussion on the Rising Cost of Health Care
August 21, 2019
LARGO, MD - Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) joined Fifth District residents this morning for a roundtable discussion on the rising cost of health care for families in Maryland. During the event, Congressman Hoyer released a report from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee which highlights the impact costly prescription drugs such as insulin have on Fifth District residents.
"The rising cost of prescription drugs is concerning for many families in the Fifth District," said Congressman Hoyer. "The Affordable Care Act significantly expanded access to affordable health care to thousands of Marylanders, but many in our state are still struggling with costs. That's why House Democrats are working on legislation to lower the costs of prescription drugs, address surprise billing, and ensure more Americans have access to quality health care."
"I appreciated the opportunity to hear directly from Marylanders who struggle with the high cost of health care," continued Congressman Hoyer. "Many families in our state struggle under the weight of health care and prescription drug costs, and we must do more to alleviate this burden. In Congress, I will continue to work with my colleagues to improve the affordability of health care in our nation."
The report released by Congressman Hoyer today found that there are an estimated 6,000 seniors and disabled Medicare beneficiaries who have been diagnosed with diabetes in the Fifth District, and the top 50 diabetes medications cost the Medicare program and beneficiaries approximately $10.6 million in 2016. It concludes that these prices far exceed the prices of these drugs in Australia, the United Kingdom, and Canada:
- If Medicare paid what Australia pays, then costs to the program in this district would have been about 73% lower, saving approximately $7.8 million.
- If Medicare paid what the UK pays, then costs to the program in this district would have been about 70% lower, saving approximately $7.4 million.
- If Medicare had paid what Canada pays, the costs to the program in this district would have been about 53% lower, saving approximately $5.6 million.
The report concludes that substantial savings could be realized for Fifth District seniors and taxpayers if Medicare and uninsured patients paid the same prices that patients overseas pay for their drugs.