State Representatives Whit Betts (R-78) and Cara Pavalock-D’Amato (R-77) praised the unanimous passage of legislation aimed at curbing increasing prices for prescriptions, the fastest growing cost in healthcare. The legislation, HB 5384, An Act Concerning Prescription Drug Costs, seeks to impose additional disclosure and reporting requirements concerning prescription drug rebates and the cost of prescription drugs.
“Prescription drugs can be incredibly expensive, and this important measure will address the issue of their rising costs. My vote in support of this measure reflects my response and commitment to the many constituents I’ve spoken with, who simply cannot afford these large increases,” said Betts, a co-sponsor of the legislation, in a press release.
Pavalock-D’Amato, a member of the legislature’s Insurance and Real Estate Committee, said in the press release, “These new requirements will hold pharmaceutical companies accountable to maintain pricing transparency with consumers. For people who rely on long-term maintenance medications, or life-saving treatment medications, and especially for those living on a fixed income, including seniors and the disabled, this bill will go a long way to ensuring the pricing stability that people rely on when managing their healthcare costs.”
A press release from House Republicans said this bill makes several changes related to prescription drugs, pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), and health carriers (e.g., insurers and HMOs). Among other things, it requires:
- Information about new drugs in the FDA approval pipeline to help better plan for new drug spending on the state employee plan and Medicaid.
- Insurers must include information on the top 25 highest cost drugs, top 25 with greatest increases and the portion of premium that increased because of drug spending on plan when they file their rates with the state Insurance Department.
- Pharmacy benefit managers must disclose rebates they received from drug companies and amount of rebate they passed onto consumers versus the amount they retained. Connecticut would become the first state in the country to require this.
- Insurers must either provide consumers with point of sale rebate at pharmacy counter or certify that they are using rebates to lower premiums.
The bill passed unanimously out of the Senate and was headed to the governor’s office for signing to become law.