Although House Democratic leaders recently suffered a setback when a trio of moderates in a key committee voted against a sweeping set of drug pricing reforms, health care policy experts tell AIS Health that the pharmaceutical industry has every reason to be worried about the prospect of government price controls becoming law. As one Capitol Hill insider put it: “The drug lobby has never been as worked up and worried before as they are right now, and the reason is because there is an extreme likelihood that something is going to pass.” If House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) gets her way, the “something” that will pass will be a group of drug pricing reforms that closely mirror what’s in H.R. 3, the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, which passed the House in 2019. Rather than standing on their own, the drug pricing provisions are included in Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package — deemed the Build Back Better plan — which also features measures aimed at expanding education and childcare support and addressing climate change, among other priorities.
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