WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump laid out what he described as “the most sweeping action in history to lower the price of prescription drugs” on Friday, casting it as a step to crack down on the pharmaceutical industry and other special-interest groups.
“The drug lobby is making an absolute fortune at the expense of American consumers,” Trump said in remarks in the Rose Garden. “Everyone involved in the broken system — the drug makers, insurance companies, distributors, pharmacy benefit managers, and many others — contribute to the problem. Government has also been part of the problem because previous leaders turned a blind eye to this incredible abuse.”
Speaking in broad strokes, Trump said the administration would attempt to ensure that Medicare Part D incentivizes drug manufacturers to keep prices low.
The move marks a shift from Trump’s campaign rhetoric, in which he said that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services should be able to negotiate directly with pharmaceutical companies to reduce prices.
In addition, Trump also said the administration will work to ease restrictions on generic drugs and make it easier for pharmacists to tell consumers about what is available.
Trump also said that the administration will attempt to make it easier for more over-the-counter drugs to be made available, thus reducing the need for as many prescriptions.