Senate Finance Committee Advances Marshall Drug Pricing Bills

Washington, D.C.  Today, the Senate Finance Committee held a bipartisan markup advancing legislation championed by U.S. Senator Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-KS), which addresses industry middlemen abuse across America’s federal prescription drug programs, including Medicare and Medicaid. 

“Overwhelming evidence shows that pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, excessively line their pockets at the expense of Medicare seniors, Medicaid beneficiaries, and American taxpayers,” Senator Marshall said. “I commend Senate Finance Committee Chairman Wyden and Ranking Member Crapo for their leadership in prioritizing key reforms that put patients first. I’m especially proud they are advancing my bipartisan, bicameral legislation ensuring access to life-saving medicine for vulnerable and low-income patients while restoring fair reimbursement for our community pharmacists.” 

The Finance Committee’s Modernizing and Ensuring PBM Accountability (MEPA) Act included two provisions modeled after bills backed by Senator Marshall:

  • Patients Before Middlemen (PBM) Act: Introduced alongside U.S. Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR), Senate Finance Ranking Member Mike Crapo (R-ID), and Senator Jon Tester (D-MT), this bipartisan bill delinks the compensation of PBMs from drug price and utilization in order to better align incentives that will help lower prescription drugs costs for Medicare Part D beneficiaries. 
  • Drug Price Transparency in Medicaid Act: Introduced alongside U.S. Senator Peter Welch (D-VT), this bipartisan bill would require pass-through pricing and prohibit spread-pricing for payment arrangements with PBMs under Medicaid. 

PBMs tactic has wasted hundreds of millions in taxpayer dollars. The Congressional Budget Office estimated the MEPA Act would produce over $1.7 billion in savings.