Biden May Have to Settle for Smaller Drug-Pricing Moves

As is the case for other flavors of health care reform, President-elect Joe Biden’s chance of passing substantial, transformative drug-pricing legislation is now highly dependent upon whether Democrats can eke out a majority in the Senate. While that question won’t be resolved until Georgia completes runoff elections in January, industry observers point out that there are ways that a Biden administration can address drug pricing through its regulatory authority — plus areas where even a split Congress might have enough common ground to pass legislation.

“A president can do a lot even with a divided Congress,” says Stephanie Kennan, a member of McGuireWoods Consulting’s federal public affairs group and former senior health policy adviser to Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) “Part of how well something gets done…depends upon the skills of the president or those negotiating for him. With Biden perhaps having a better understanding of the Senate, having come from the Senate, [that] might help him.”

© 2021 MMIT

Leslie Small

Leslie has been reporting and editing in various journalism roles for nearly a decade. Most recently, she was the senior editor of FierceHealthPayer, an e-newsletter covering the health insurance industry. A graduate of Penn State University, she previously served in editing roles at newspapers in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Colorado.

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