WASHINGTON, DC (July 17, 2018): The Council for Affordable Health Coverage (CAHC) – a coalition of employers, insurers, life science companies, PBMs, brokers, agents, patient groups, and physician organizations – provided comments this week in response to a request for information (RFI) submitted by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) accompanying the Trump administration’s “American Patients First” plan to lower prescription drug costs.
In its comment letter, CAHC championed solutions to pay for value, expand biosimilars, and lower consumer prices. Specific recommendations include codifying FDA’s recently issued guidance allowing pre-approval communication between manufacturers and health plans, creating clear exceptions to Medicaid “best price” for value-based arrangements, and establishing a safe harbor from Anti-Kickback regulations for value-based and coordinated care models.
CAHC also provided a cost estimate prepared by CAHC Chief Economist and Congressional Budget Office alumnus Jeff Lemieux projecting up to $47 billion in annual savings to the healthcare system from adoption of its proposals, as well as $3.7 billion in federal budgetary savings over the ten-year budget window.
CAHC President Joel White released the following statement:
“The Trump administration’s ‘American Patients First’ plan marks a good first step toward lower drug costs for hardworking consumers, but there is still more work to be done. The administration recognizes this, hence the release of its RFI. In our letter, CAHC was pleased to offer comment on additional measures that should be taken to reward innovative payment models and further accelerate the shift toward value-based care. All told, we project that our solutions would save up to $47 billion annually in total healthcare costs while saving U.S. taxpayers some $3.7 billion over the next decade. That translates to real relief at the pharmacy counter for those who need it most – with much of the projected savings coming from specialty medicines where costs are rising fastest. We look forward to our continued work with the administration to improve prescription drug affordability and access for all Americans,” said CAHC President Joel White.