Jul 25, 2019
AARP Statement on Allowing Medicare to Negotiate Prescription Drug Prices
AARP Backs Sen. Stabenow’s Proposal on Negotiating Authority

En español | WASHINGTONAARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer Nancy LeaMond issued the following statement today in support of Sen. Debbie Stabenow’s amendment on “Medicare Drug Price Negotiation.” The Senate Finance Committee is considering bipartisan legislation aimed at making medications more affordable.

“AARP supports Senator Stabenow’s amendment to allow Medicare to negotiate for lower prescription drug prices. Every year, Medicare spends more than $129 billion on prescription drugs, yet it is prohibited by law from negotiating with drug companies for lower prices. With more than 40 million beneficiaries in Part D, the federal government should be leveraging its buying power to lower prices. There is no reason that Americans should continue to pay the highest prices in the world.

“Just 10 drugs in Medicare Part D drive 20% of spending in the program. Further, a recent AARP report showed that the average drug price increase in the first six months of this year was 10.5%— five times the rate of inflation. Prescription drugs don’t work if patients can’t afford to take them. Additionally, skyrocketing drug prices increase taxpayer costs by billions of dollars for programs like Medicare. Addressing high drug prices is critical for AARP’s 38 million members, and allowing Medicare to use its buying power to lower prescription drug prices has long been a priority for AARP and its members.” 

An AARP poll last year of 1,218 likely voters who are age 50+ found that 95% of independents, 93% of Republicans, and 90% of Democrats said they support allowing federal and state governments to use their enormous buying power to negotiate for lower prescription drug prices.

# # #

About AARP
AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation's largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.

Media Contact: Greg Phillips, 202-434-2560, gphillips@aarp.org, @AARPmedia