That's the question the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform will try to answer this Thursday at a 10 am EST hearing in the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, DC.
As the committee notes, the Medicare Part D program provides prescription drug coverage to almost 30 million enrollees, and will cost federal taxpayers almost $1 trillion in the next decade. Since Part D began in January 2006, there have been questions whether private insurers who run the program are effectively negotiating with drugmakers for low prices. The hearing will examine whether insurers that receive government subsidies to provide the Part D benefit are able to effectively obtain discounts.
Here is the witness list...
Kerry Weems - Acting Administrator, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services; Steve Schondelmeyer- Dep of Pharmaceutical Care and Health Systems, University of Minnesota; Gerard Anderson - Director, Center for Hospital Finance and Management, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University; Fona Scott Morton - economics professor, Yale School of Management, Yale University; Mark Merritt - ceo, Pharmaceutical Care Management Association; Rick Smith, senior vp of policy, PhRMA; Paul Precht, director of policy and communications, Medicare Rights Center