Puskaric to Introduce Legislation to Combat Rapidly Rising Drug Costs Due to COVID-19
4/22/2020
HARRISBURG – Recognizing the intense fiscal pressure Pennsylvania is facing due to COVID-19, Rep. Mike Puskaric (R-Allegheny/Washington) today introduced House Bill 2426, legislation to bring greater transparency to pharmaceutical drug costs.

The Pharmaceutical Transparency Review Act, which has been referred to the House Insurance Committee, would ensure the Commonwealth has all necessary information to address rapidly rising drug prices. Modeled after successful actions taken in other states, this legislation would create an independent board of experts who would review drug pricing information and make recommendations for state-based action Pennsylvania can take to lower the cost of prescription drugs.

“We must be good stewards of the tax dollars with which we are entrusted,” said Puskaric. “The high cost of pharmaceuticals is one of the largest contributors to Pennsylvania’s spending on health care. Our state currently lacks the authority necessary to implement proper public accountability measures related to prescription drug costs. As we face stark budgetary realities, we need the Pharmaceutical Transparency Review Act in Pennsylvania now more than ever.”

The bill is based on proven methods that already exist in Pennsylvania, such as the review of health insurance rate filings and public utility rate review. It represents a balanced approach between limited government and prudent budgeting.

“Without oversight, drug prices can burden taxpayers, as well as strain the budgets of our state government, local hospitals, employers and the residents of Pennsylvania,” said Puskaric. “The Pharmaceutical Transparency Review Act represents a measured and reasonable effort to ensure informed and fiscally responsible decision making.”

House Bill 2426 represents a bicameral effort to find a Pennsylvania-based solution to this problem. In March, Sen. Dan Laughlin (R-Erie) introduced Senate Bill 1092, which is companion in the Senate to Puskaric’s bill.

Representative Mike Puskaric
39th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

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