Urgent Take Action:
Lower Drug Costs - Reform Pharmacy Benefit Managers
Join entrepreneurs and business leaders all around the country today supporting reform!
Dear Member of Congress:
The American Free Enterprise Chamber of Commerce (AmFree Chamber) is a trade organization representing American entrepreneurs, creators, and businesses of all sizes. It is dedicated to advancing the principles of free enterprise, free markets, limited government, and American leadership globally. Our member businesses, like every American household, face increasing cost pressure to fund employee healthcare plans, including prescription drug coverage.
We write to urge you to pass meaningful reforms of pharmacy benefit managers – or PBMs – so that we can make out-of-pocket costs for prescription drugs more affordable for consumers and for those of us providing health benefits for America’s workers.
For too long, employees have been forced to pay higher out-of-pocket costs for the medicines they need as a result of PBM business practices. At the same time, they have less access to the drugs their doctors prescribe because PBMs are excluding hundreds of drugs from the formularies these middlemen control.
PBMs and their advocates cherry-pick data to show how they are the bulwark against rapidly rising drug costs. What they don’t tell you is that the consumer price index for pharmaceuticals actually decreased from 2008 to 2019 and, in the CPI ending May 2022, drug prices increased by only 1.9%. Yet employers’ health care costs increase year after year, and consumers out-of-pocket at the pharmacy counter remain unacceptably high.
This occurs while obscure middlemen PBMs line their own pockets by exploiting America’s opaque and anti-competitive prescription drug distribution system. Even when list prices are stable, employer and consumer costs are going up because the system is geared to maximize profits for the middlemen.
We strongly encourage Congress to erect safeguards to prevent these kinds of PBM business practices that rob our drug benefits of value and raise costs for employers and consumers. We also encourage you to support legislation that has been introduced recently to address harmful PBM practices. This includes legislation that would:
• Require PBMs to adhere to the same level of transparency as other publicly traded companies which would enable their business clients to verify that they are getting their money’s worth.
• De-link PBM revenues from drug prices, so the middlemen aren’t incentivized to steer their clients and consumers toward higher-priced medicines and restrict access to less expensive generics and biosimilars.
• Require that PBM clients and consumers benefit from the rebates they negotiate with drug manufacturers.
The commonsense reforms proposed in Congress have the overwhelming support of the American people. In fact, a recent survey showed that 81% of the public believes that PBM profits should be disconnected from prescription drug prices and 82% support requirements that PBMs pass along the discounts they receive to help lower drug costs for end users.
The PBMs are desperate to stop reform legislation from passing because it will rein in the practices that have made these middlemen – the three large companies that control 80% of the drug prescribing market – some of the most profitable corporations in the world. American businesses and American workers will benefit when we make the system work for them and pursue real policies that reduce prescription drug costs.