Pharmaceutical group’s lawsuit over Medicare drug price program dismissed

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pharmaceuticals

Pharmaceutical group’s lawsuit over Medicare drug price program dismissed

 
Feb 12 (Reuters) – A federal judge on Monday dismissed a lawsuit by a major pharmaceutical industry trade association challenging a new program that allows Medicare to negotiate prices with drug companies for selected costly drugs.
 
U.S. District Judge David Ezra in Austin, Texas, sided with President Joe Biden’s administration in dismissing

a lawsuit by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) and two other groups that argued that the program was unconstitutional.

 
“We are disappointed with the court’s decision, which does not address the merits of our lawsuit, and we are weighing our next legal steps,” PhRMA spokesperson Nicole Longo said in a statement.
 
The ruling marked another victory for the administration in its defense of the negotiation program, one of Biden’s signature initiatives and part of the Inflation Reduction Act that the Democratic president signed into law in 2022.
 
The program aims to save $25 billion annually by 2031 by requiring drugmakers to negotiate the prices of selected expensive drugs with the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS), which oversees Medicare.
 
Drugmakers that refuse to participate must either pay heavy fines or withdraw altogether from Medicare, which covers 66 million Americans mostly aged 65 and older and accounts for a large share of U.S. prescription drug spending.