Press Statement from Health Care For All's Director Amy Rosenthal on the MassHealth Prescription Drug Provision in the Final Senate Budget for FY20

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

(Boston, MA) -"Health Care For All applauds the Senate for retaining the strong language included in the proposed Senate Ways and Means budget to address the rapidly rising costs of prescription drugs in the MassHealth program. MassHealth spending for prescription drugs has nearly doubled from $1.1 billion to $1.9 billion over the past five years. This provision provides MassHealth with additional critical tools to negotiate lower prices for the most expensive drugs.

"The Senate budget allows the Executive Office of Health and Human Services to publicly post the value of a drug if it is found to be unreasonably priced and if there is no agreement on supplemental rebates with the manufacturer. It also promotes transparency by requiring pharmaceutical companies to participate in public hearings and report to state agencies information relating to drug pricing.

"We believe the Senate's approach, which echoes the Governor's proposal, is the best path toward bringing down prescription drug costs in MassHealth."