WASHINGTON, DC – August 12, 2022 – Congress recently passed a Democrat-sponsored bill to lower the cost of prescription drugs, healthcare and fight climate change. Large businesses will pay a 15% corporate minimum tax to defray this cost. The legislation was passed through the budget reconciliation process. The bill narrowly passed 51 to 50 with all 50 Democrats voting for the bill and all 50 Republicans voting against it. The tie-breaker vote was from Vice President Harris. The bill has been sent to the President who is expected to sign it. After the Senate first ratified the bill on August 7th, Biden told reporters, “When you sit down at that kitchen table at the end of the month, you’re going to be able to pay a whole hell of a lot more bills because you’re paying less in medical bills.”
America is the only developed nation in the world where a citizen can become financially-strapped because of the high cost of health care. Oftentimes, hard-working Americans have to potentially compromise their health by spending their limited resources on food and shelter instead of prescription medicine.
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) lowers the cost of prescription drugs and health care for Medicare recipients and people in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchanges. It also introduces financial incentives for energy and climate reform to reduce the health impacts of climate change.
Here are some of the provisions of the IRA:
- Medicare will be able to negotiate prices of certain expensive drugs with pharmaceutical companies
- Insulin co-payments would be capped at $35 a month
- Out-of-pocket costs for prescription medicines would be capped at $2,000 annually
- Drug companies will offer rebates if prescription prices outpace inflation
- There is a three-year extension on the Marketplace subsidies
- Renewable energy infrastructure, like for solar panels and wind turbines, will be expanded
- Tax credits for electric vehicle, solar panels and wind turbine purchases and for making homes more energy-efficient
- Electric vehicle plant support
- Support for farmers and ranchers who have been devastated by the environmental impacts of climate change and to cities and states to transition to clean energy
Here are some health & financial impacts of the IRA:
- 4 million people will save on the cost of their prescription medicine, particularly expensive drugs for cancer or multiple sclerosis.
- 3 million Americans used insulin to treat diabetes in 2020 and many will save money
- 13 million Americans will avoid increasing Marketplace premiums for 3 years.
Listen to the full report below:
Contact: Dick Needleman, Health reporter, 103.3 AshevilleFM, firstname.lastname@example.org