Report: Medicare Negotiation Should Target Pricey Drugs With Chart: Medicare Spends Most of Its Rx Dollars on Small Share of Drugs

An April 19 analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) found that a small number of drugs accounted for the majority of spending in Medicare, and that drug pricing negotiation could lower overall spending in the program. Negotiating drug prices for Medicare has become a hot topic in health care policy circles, and it is one of the options on the table as Congress considers options to control drug costs (RDB 3/25/21, p. 1).

According to the report, the 250 top-selling drugs in Medicare Part D with one manufacturer and no generic or biosimilar competition accounted for 60% of net total Part D spending, while the top 50 drugs covered under Medicare Part B accounted for 80% of total Part B drug spending (see infographic, p. 6).

© 2024 MMIT
Peter Johnson

Peter Johnson

Peter has worked as a journalist since 2011 and has covered health care since 2020. At AIS Health, Peter covers trends in finance, business and policy that affect the health insurance and pharma sectors. For Health Plan Weekly, he covers all aspects of the U.S. health insurance sector, including employer-sponsored insurance, Medicaid managed care, Medicare Advantage and the Affordable Care Act individual marketplaces. In Radar on Drug Benefits, Peter covers the operations of (and conflicts between) pharmacy benefit managers and pharmaceutical manufacturers, with a particular focus on pricing dynamics and market access. Before joining AIS Health, Peter covered transportation, public safety and local government for various outlets in Seattle, his hometown and current place of residence. He graduated with a B.A. from Colby College.

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